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What Is Sinusitis and How Can It Be Treated?

  • Category: Seasonal, ENT
  • Posted On:
  • Written By: Dr. Nadim Bikhazi
What Is Sinusitis and How Can It Be Treated?

The uncomfortable, plugged feeling of a stuffy nose is common with colds and allergies. For most people, this type of nasal congestion is merely an annoyance that decreases their sense of smell, changes the way that foods taste, and can cause runny or congested nose. However, it improves after the cold or allergies are gone.

Some people's stuffy noses don't resolve after other symptoms are gone. This long-term stuffy nose is called chronic sinusitis. It happens when the sinuses behind your face are swollen and inflamed for three months or longer, despite treatment.

Sinusitis affects 10% of people every year and usually spikes during the spring and summer. We asked ENT Dr. Nadim Bikhazi how chronic sinusitis is treated.

What causes sinusitis?

"Severe allergies can often cause chronic sinusitis," says Dr. Bikhazi. "It occurs when the spaces inside your nose and head (sinuses) are inflamed and swollen for 90 days or longer, despite treatment. Chronic sinusitis can also be caused by nasal polyps, respiratory tract infections, or a deviated nasal septum."

Common symptoms of sinusitis include:

  • Thick, discolored discharge, or mucus, from the nose
  • Drainage down the back of the throat, which also is known as postnasal drainage
  • Nasal obstruction or congestion, causing difficulty breathing through your nose
  • Pain, pressure, fullness or tenderness, and swelling around your eyes, cheeks, nose or forehead
  • Reduced sense of smell and taste

What is the best treatment for sinusitis?

"Proper sinusitis treatment can make a tremendous difference in a person’s quality of life, improving symptoms like sinus headaches, nasal discharge, pressure, pain, or frequent infections," says Dr. Bikhazi.

Antibiotics are the first step.

If antibiotics don’t work (or are in danger of being used too often), then a minimally-invasive surgery called balloon sinuplasty the next course of action Dr. Bikhazi often advises.

Dr. Bikhazi says, "I love this procedure for my patients because of how quickly we can relieve symptoms with a very minor recovery time." Balloon sinuplasty is a very quick, outpatient endoscopic nasal surgery. A small balloon is used to expand the passageways to your nasal sinuses to drain to allow them to drain. The procedure requires no incisions or loss of nasal tissue, and has a very short recovery time. People usually go back to work the same day.

Dr. Nadim Bikhazi

Dr. Nadim Bikhazi is an Ear, Nose, & Throat (ENT) Specialist in Ogden. Dr. Bikhazi is very interested in research and keeps his patients apprised of the latest technological advances. He has a strong interest in sinus surgery, otology, allergy screening and treatment, sleep apnea, and snoring solutions. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Bikhazi, please call 801-475-3075.