Rhinosinusitis

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Rhinosinusitis is inflammation of the nose and sinuses.

Rhinosinusitis is inflammation of the nose and sinuses. It has a variety of causes and treatments.

When rhinosinusitis lasts a few days or weeks, it is called acute rhinosinusitis. When it lasts for months or years, it is called chronic rhinosinusitis.

Additional symptoms beyond the nose and sinuses include fatigue, pain in the neck, back, and joints, and pressure against the eyes. These symptoms can interfere with work, causing lost productivity. They can also interfere with socializing, as inflamed sinuses can produce funny facial gestures that lead to miscommunication.

The body produces inflammation and mucus as methods to protect and defend itself. These processes can prevent pathogens from causing more serious harm, and the sinuses also warm and filter the air one breathes. However, an excess of mucus or inflammation (in amount or duration) can cause worse problems than it would prevent. For this reason, a balance between how much mucus and inflammation the body produces versus removes can play a vital role in healthy sinuses.

Rhinosinusitis is the most common illness confronting humanity, and its effects can be severe. Often it starts out as a mild bout of acute rhinosinusitis, such as from a cold virus. However, if the problem spreads, it can persist for a long time, building a protective fortress and lodging pathogens in the body. This can make the disease highly resistant to treatment. It costs many billions of dollars. [1] Despite its ubiquity and severity, sinusitis has been poorly studied, and cures remain elusive.

Rhinosinusitis can be difficult to diagnose. Because of its widespread effects, the disease often masks itself. For example, it can cause pain and pressure in the eyes and teeth, as well as neck pain, joint pain, fatigue, vision problems, and many more seemingly unrelated symptoms. Therefore rhinosinusitis may be even more prevalent than already thought.