Monday, September 26, 2022

How Does A Doctor Diagnose A Sinus Infection

Risk Factors For Sinusitis

Best Way to Diagnose a Sinus Infection

The main risk factor for a sinus infection is having a cold or hay fever, which leads to inflammation and blockage in the sinuses.

Risk for sinusitis is also higher in those with a deviated septum or narrow sinus structure, which allows fluid to more easily get trapped.

If you have a medical condition such as cystic fibrosis or weakened immune system, you also are more likely to develop a sinus infection.

Types Of Chronic Sinusitis Or Chronic Sinus Infections

While acute sinusitis often involves an infection, chronic sinusitis does not. Sometimes, the long-term illness is caused by an infection that hasn’t cleared up properly, but most often the exact cause of chronic sinusitis isn’t known.

But clinicians may categorize chronic sinusitis into one of three types depending on the features present.

The most common type of the illness, chronic sinusitis without nasal polyposis, involves swelling and inflammation of the mucous membranes by various non-polyp factors, such as allergies or irritation and infections.

Chronic sinusitis with nasal polyposis, on the other hand, involves nasal polyps that are large enough to clog the sinus. It’s not always clear why some people develop these polyps and others dont.

In chronic sinusitis with fungal allergy, people experience a strong allergic reaction to fungi in the air, which causes their mucous membranes to produce a thick, dense mucus.

How Do You Treat The Common Cold

Unfortunately, theres no cure for a cold. Instead, the CDC recommends getting plenty of rest and drinking lots of fluids. You can take over-the-counter cold medications, but they wont speed up the course of your illness.

Worth noting, per the CDC: Because the common cold is caused by viruses, antibioticswhich treat bacterial infectionswont help you get better.

Of course, you want relief from your symptoms, too. Susan Besser, M.D., a primary care physician at Mercy Medical Center in Baltimore, recommends taking acetaminophen or ibuprofen for fever and aches and a decongestant if you are uncomfortably stuffy. Honey is also excellent for coughs, she says. A steroid nasal spray like fluticasone can also help, she says.

Ultimately for a cold, symptomatic treatment is best, Dr. Besser says.

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Sinus Pain And Pressure

Fluid trapped in the sinuses can fill the sinus cavities, causing intense pain and pressure. The sinuses may be sensitive to the touch. A person may have an urge to sneeze but be unable to do so.

The pain can be in the cheeks, around the eyes and nose, or in the forehead because these areas are where the sinuses are. Bending over may make the pain worse.

Sometimes, the pressure and pain are intense enough to interfere with sleep.

Sinusitis may also cause the tissue in the nose to swell.

When To See A Doctor At Apollo Spectra Jaipur

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Sinusitis often goes away on its own. There are times when you should see your doctor in Jaipur if self-care treatment work. You should see a doctor if you have sinusitis symptoms after a week or if they return more than a few times within a year. Signs of sinus infection include:

  • Fever

Call to book an appointment.

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Symptoms And Treatment For Viral Vs Bacterial Sinusitis

Weve all experienced the common cold symptoms of a runny nose, nasal congestion, and sinus pressure. But sometimes these symptoms can indicate something different: sinusitis, or a sinus infection. Sinusitis can be viral or bacterial. Knowing which one you have can be helpful for treating sinus infection symptoms and helping ensure you feel better fast.

In this article, I will describe the symptoms of both viral and bacterial sinusitis. I will also talk about the causes of each, how theyre diagnosed, and what your treatment options are.

Treatment And Medication Options For Sinus Infection

Up to 70 percent of people with acute sinusitis recover without prescribed medications, according to the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology .

Treatment for acute sinus infections focus on relieving symptoms, such as by:

  • Drinking lots of fluids and getting plenty of rest
  • Flushing out the sinuses with a saline nasal wash like a Neti Pot or a saline nasal spray
  • Inhaling steam several times a day
  • Using a humidifier
  • Resting a warmed, moist washcloth or a warm compress over your nose and cheeks

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What Are The Causes Of Sinusitis

Most sinus infections are caused by the common cold. Since the viral infection can cause your nasal cavities to swell, it prevents the normal flow of mucus. This situation can lead to a sinus infection.

Other causes of sinus infections include:

  • Allergic reactions that affect your sinuses
  • Medical conditions like cystic fibrosis or HIV that prevent your body from fighting infections
  • Abnormalities in your nasal passage, such as a deviated septum or polyps

What Is Sinus Infection Symptoms Causes Diagnosis Treatment And Prevention

Sinus infection symptoms, remedies and treatment – Dr. Jordan Josephson

Lying behind your eyebrows, behind your cheekbones, and between your eyes are your sinuses air-filled cavities lined with a mucous membrane that filters and humidifies the air you inhale.

This membrane produces and circulates mucus into your sinus and nasal passages to help remove dust, particles, and microbes from the air that you breathe. Tiny hair-like cells called cilia sweep the mucus to the openings that lead to the back of your throat, allowing it to slide down into your stomach.

A sinus infection occurs when the sinuses become inflamed and swell up because of a viral, bacterial, or fungal infection. The infection can be acute or chronic .

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What Your Doctor Needs To Know

To find out if youâve got more than a bad cold, you need to learn the cause of your symptoms. Your doctor can help you figure out whether you have sinusitis or something else.

Tell your doctor how long youâve had sinus symptoms, and whether theyâve gotten worse or stayed the same. If youâve had them for less than 10 days and theyâre not getting worse, you probably have a viral infection. It will likely go away on its own.

Over-the-counter treatments like saline sprays, acetaminophen, or ibuprofen may help ease symptoms along the way. might reduce the swelling and inflammation temporarily. If you use them, read the directions carefully and only use as directed. Using nasal decongestant sprays for more than a few days could make the congestion worse.

Types Of Viral Sinus Infection

A viral sinus infection is most often caused by a common cold, which can infect the lining of the ear, nose, and throat, and inflame the sinuses. There are more than a hundred different viruses that cause colds, the most common of which are rhinoviruses. Some other viruses that can cause sinus infections can include influenza viruses and parainfluenza viruses. Viruses, especially cold viruses, can change the mucus in the nose and cause nasal tissues to swell, blocking the sinuses.

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What Are The Types Of Sinus Infections

Chronic sinus infection

It is a persistent process of inflammation of the sinuses and lasts more than three months.

Subacute sinus infection

Symptoms last up to three months. It commonly occurs with seasonal allergies.

Acute sinus infection

Viruses, bacteria, or fungi infect the sinus cavity and cause inflammation. Usually lasts less than 3-5 days.

Diagnosis Of Sinus Infection

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To diagnose if you have a sinus infection, your doctor will ask about your symptoms and their timeframe, and give you a physical exam.

This exam may include looking in the nose for signs of polyps, conducting a transillumination test to identify inflammation, and tapping the sinus area to detect infections.

If you have a chronic sinus infection, your doctor may conduct additional tests, including:

  • Rhinoscopy or nasal endoscopy to inspect your sinuses and see if your membranes are inflamed
  • Mucus cultures to determine what is specifically causing your infection
  • Allergy tests to determine what allergens may be triggering your chronic or recurrent infections
  • CT scan to identify sinus abnormalities, such as polyps or a deviated septum
  • MRI scan to see if you have a nasal tumor or fungal infection

If you have a serious fungal sinus infection, your doctor may order a bone biopsy to see if the infection has penetrated your bones.

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What Are The Treatment Options

Sinusitis is treated differently based on the cause. Most cases of acute sinusitis, about 98 percent, are caused by a virus, not bacteria, and should not be treated with antibiotics. Acute viral sinusitis may be treated using pain relievers such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen, steroid nasal sprays, or salt water irrigation in the nose. These treatments are also good options for acute bacterial sinusitis. Most people get better naturally from acute bacterial sinusitis, called watchful waiting, but some patients with acute bacterial sinusitis may get better faster with an antibiotic.

Chronic sinusitis is treated differently than acute sinusitis. Because chronic sinusitis is caused more by inflammation than infection, the treatments for chronic sinusitis aim to control the inflammation. Salt water nasal irrigation and/or nasal steroid sprays are the main treatments for the symptoms of chronic sinusitis. Antibiotics may sometimes be helpful but not always.

Other factors, including allergies, nasal polyps, asthma, and problems with the bodys ability to fight infections, can go along with sinusitis and make it worse unless they are also treated.

X-rays or CT scans of the sinuses are not necessary to diagnose uncomplicated sinusitis if you have the symptoms of sinusitis . If your doctor suspects a complication or if you have repeated episodes or prolonged sinus symptoms, a CT scan of your sinuses may be needed.

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What Tests Diagnose The Cause Of Sinus Infections And Sinusitis

Sinus infection is most often diagnosed based on the history and examination of a doctor. Because plain X-ray studies of the sinuses may be misleading and procedures such as CT and MRI scans, which are much more sensitive in their ability to diagnose a sinus infection, are so expensive and not available in most doctors’ offices, most sinus infections are initially diagnosed and treated based on clinical findings on examination. These physical findings may include:

  • redness and swelling of the nasal passages,
  • purulent drainage from the nasal passages ,
  • tenderness to percussion over the cheeks or forehead region of the sinuses, and
  • swelling about the eyes and cheeks.

Occasionally, nasal secretions are examined for secreted cells that may help differentiate between infectious and allergic sinusitis. Infectious sinusitis may show specialized cells of infection while allergic sinusitis may show specialized white blood cells of allergy . Physicians prescribe antibiotics if the bacterial infection is suspected. Antibiotics are not effective against viral infections many physicians then treat the symptoms.

In addition, both rigid and flexible endoscopy has been used to obtain diagnostic material from sinuses. These procedures are usually done by an otolaryngologist under topical and local anesthesia. Occasionally, there may be a need to sedate the patient. Some investigators suggest that endoscopy specimens are comparable to those obtained by needle puncture.

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Favorite Resources For Finding A Specialist

Through research, education, and advocacy, the American Rhinologic Society is devoted to serving patients with nose, sinus, and skull base disorders. Their website provides a valuable search tool to find a doctor, as well as links to other medical societies and resources that are useful for patients.

What Is A Cold

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The common cold is an upper respiratory illness that can be caused by a slew of viruses, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention . Those viruses can include rhinoviruses, respiratory syncytial virus , adenoviruses, and coronaviruses.

Common cold viruses spread from infected people to others through the air and close contact, the CDC says. You can also pick up a cold by shaking hands with someone who is infected or touching a surface that has one of the viruses on it and then touching your eyes, mouth, or nose.

Symptoms of the common cold usually include:

  • Sore throat
  • Bad breath

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How Do You Diagnose A Sinus Infection Bacterial

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Doctors Say It’s Ok To Wait Before Treating Kids’ Sinus Infections

Sinusitis gets diagnosed 30 million times a year, and with the infections accounting for 20 percent of all antibiotic prescriptions, the ENTs see this as a chance to reduce overprescribing.

They’re going further than their previous guidelines in saying that even if you’re really sick, it’s OK to wait on the meds. And they’re breaking ranks with their fellow physicians in infectious disease and internal medicine, who say everyone with a bacterial infection should get an antibiotic.

“We’re not saying you’re wrong to do it,” Rosenfeld says. “We’re saying, you know, there’s a good chance you’re going to get better on your own.”

So then what to do while you’re feeling like your head is going to explode?

Saline nose washes get a big thumbs up from the ENTs, as do as over-the-counter pain medications. The saline washes out mucus and reduces stuffiness, and also improves the health of membranes, Rosenfeld says.

Steroid nose sprays may help with inflammation, the guidelines say, especially for people with chronic sinusitis, which lasts more than three months.

Chronic sinusitis shouldn’t be diagnosed just on symptoms, the guidelines say a doctor needs to document there’s inflammation of the nose and sinuses, something that can be done by looking up the nose with various scopes.

“You can diagnose acute sinusitis from your armchair at home,” Rosenfeld says. “But you can’t diagnose chronic sinusitis.” For that, at least, you need that doctor.

Clarification April 2, 2015

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When Should You See A Doctor About Your Symptoms

Dr. Bleier recommends giving it at least a week. If your symptoms are not responding to the usual home remedies like rest, decongestants, and saline irrigations in seven to 10 days, or they improved but then got worse, its certainly reasonable to see somebody, he says.

And, if you regularly find yourself in this situation, Dr. Bleier recommends consulting an ear, nose, and throat specialist to make sure you dont have an underlying sinus issue.

How Do You Treat A Sinus Infection

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It depends. Most sinus infections usually get better on their own, the CDC says. But, if your sinus infection is caused by bacteria, you may need antibiotics, the ACAAI says.

If your doctor decides that you need antibiotics, you may be prescribed a course of the medication that lasts anywhere from three to 28 days, with longer treatments usually prescribed for people with more severe cases, the ACAAI says.

However, the ACAAI warns against overusing antibiotics and recommends that people with symptoms of a sinus infection only take antibiotics if their symptoms last beyond seven to 10 days.

You can also try the following to get relief, per the ACAAI:

  • Use nasal decongestant sprays for three to four days.
  • Take antihistamines.
  • Try a topical nasal corticosteroid spray.
  • Use a saline nasal wash.

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When To Contact A Medical Professional

  • Your symptoms last longer than 10 to 14 days or you have a cold that gets worse after 7 days.
  • You have a severe headache that is not relieved by over-the-counter pain medicine.
  • You have a fever.
  • You still have symptoms after taking all of your antibiotics properly.
  • You have any changes in your vision during a sinus infection.

A green or yellow discharge does not mean that you definitely have a sinus infection or need antibiotics.

Types Of Sinus Infection

A sinus infection can appear in four different ways. Each way is based on the timeframe of the infection and how persistent it is. The four types of sinus infection are:

  • Acute sinusitis comes on suddenly and lasts less than four weeks.
  • Subacute sinusitis comes on like acute sinusitis but resolves within 12 weeks.
  • Chronic sinusitis happens when your symptoms persist longer than 12 weeks.
  • Recurrent acute sinusitis is when you have four or more acute sinus infections lasting seven days each, in a one-year span.

If your sinus infection lasts for long periods of time without any relief, even with the use of over-the-counter medicine, you should schedule an appointment with your doctor.

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When To See The Doctor For Sinus Infection

Symptoms that last more than 10 days without improvement and are worsening after you started to improve is cause for concern. If you have symptoms like severe headache or facial pain and a fever that lasts longer than three to four days, you should seek immediate medical care. Your doctor will be able to help diagnose the underlying cause of your symptoms and will provide an active plan of treatment.

While sinus infections are common, they can also be life-threatening. If a sinus infection becomes severe and goes untreated, it can spread to the brain.

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