Sinusitis is basically an infection of the sinus cavities. There are 4 sets of sinuses:
These cavities are air-filled cavities which are connected to the nose by small openings or Ostia.
When the openings swell up; the mucous then collects. If the openings are blocked frequently, these sinuses get infected. Think of this like a 6-lane highway that leads into a city which suddenly becomes a one-way street. This may be manifested in:
- pressure symptoms,
- pain(cheek, teeth),
- postnasal drip,
- blocked nose,
- thick coloured mucus
Infections lasting 3 months or longer are defined as chronic sinusitis. The main issue with chronic sinusitis is that your body is constantly fighting an infection; this stresses your immune system and may cause chronic cough, tiredness, fatigue etc.
We strongly advise treatment of chronic sinusitis- this need not be surgery as often we can treat this with culture-directed antibiotics, decongestants, nasal steroids and nasal douche.
Occasionally if the infection is persistent, not treated properly and the sinus blocks off completely; this may result in serious complications in nearby structures such as the skin, eye, bone and the brain.
Dr Adrian SaurajenNobel Ent Centre
MBBS (U of Sydney, Australia), FRCS (ENT) (RCS, Edinburgh, United Kingdom), FRCS (RCPS, Glasgow, United Kingdom), FAMS (Academy of Medicine, Singapore), M Med (Sleep Medicine) (U of Sydney, Australia)
6 Napier Road #10-04,
Gleneagles Medical Centre,