Acute sinusitis

By Dr. Paul Thomas
Updated 2024-03-06 16:24:53 | Published 2023-10-11 10:16:56
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    • Explore the Diseases category on iMedix for comprehensive insights into various health conditions. This section offers detailed information on symptoms, causes, treatments, and preventive measures, providing a valuable resource for understanding and managing health challenges.

An abstract illustration of Acute Sinusitis

Acute sinusitis is a common inflammatory condition characterized by the swelling and infection of the sinus cavities. It occurs when the nasal passages and sinuses become blocked due to the accumulation of mucus and fluid, leading to the growth of bacteria or viruses. This condition often occurs as a result of a cold or respiratory infection.

Acute sinusitis : Everything you need to know

What is Acute Sinusitis?

Acute sinusitis, also known as acute rhinosinusitis, is an inflammation of the sinuses that usually follows a viral upper respiratory infection or cold. It can also be caused by bacterial infections. The condition leads to swelling in the sinuses, which blocks the drainage of mucus and causes symptoms such as pain, congestion, and pressure.

What are the symptoms of Acute Sinusitis?

Symptoms of acute sinusitis include nasal congestion, thick nasal discharge (often green or yellow), facial pain or pressure (especially around the forehead, eyes, and cheeks), reduced sense of smell, cough, headache, fever, bad breath, and fatigue.

How is Acute Sinusitis diagnosed?

Diagnosis of acute sinusitis is typically based on medical history and physical examination. A healthcare provider may check for tenderness over the sinuses and nasal congestion. In some cases, imaging tests like a CT scan or MRI may be used to confirm the diagnosis, particularly in recurrent or severe cases.

What are the treatment options for Acute Sinusitis?

Treatment often includes home remedies like warm compresses, nasal irrigation, and over-the-counter pain relievers and decongestants. If bacteria are suspected, a doctor may prescribe antibiotics. In cases of persistent or severe sinusitis, corticosteroids or other treatments may be necessary.

Can Acute Sinusitis lead to complications?

Although rare, complications can occur, especially if acute sinusitis is not properly treated. These can include chronic sinusitis, meningitis, orbital cellulitis, or abscesses. It's important to see a doctor if symptoms worsen or do not improve with initial treatment.

How long does Acute Sinusitis typically last?

Acute sinusitis typically lasts for about 7 to 10 days, although some cases can persist for up to four weeks. If symptoms last for more than 10 days without improvement, it's recommended to see a healthcare provider for evaluation and potential treatment.

Can Acute Sinusitis be prevented?

While it's not always possible to prevent acute sinusitis, reducing risk factors can help. This includes avoiding upper respiratory infections, managing allergies, practicing good hygiene, using a humidifier to keep nasal passages moist, and avoiding smoking and other irritants.

People with acute sinusitis typically experience symptoms such as facial pain or pressure, nasal congestion, headache, loss of smell, coughing, and fatigue. In some cases, fever and dental pain may also be present.

Treatment for acute sinusitis usually involves managing the symptoms and addressing the underlying cause. This may include using over-the-counter pain relievers, decongestants, nasal saline rinse, and applying warm compresses. Antibiotics may be prescribed if the condition is caused by bacteria.

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It is important to seek prompt medical attention if symptoms worsen or persist for more than a few weeks. Although acute sinusitis is usually a temporary condition, it can lead to complications if left untreated or if there are underlying health conditions.

Disease Causes
Acute sinusitis
  • Viral infections (such as the common cold)
  • Bacterial infections (such as streptococcus pneumoniae or haemophilus influenzae)
  • Fungal infections
  • Allergies
  • Nasal polyps or tumors
  • Structural abnormalities in the sinus cavities or nasal passages
  • Exposure to pollutants or irritants
  • Immune system disorders
  • Smoking

Acute Sinusitis

The general symptoms of Acute Sinusitis include:

  • Nasal congestion
  • Facial pain or pressure
  • Headache
  • Cough
  • Sore throat
  • Fever
  • Fatigue
  • Bad breath
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