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Sinus Infection
Copyright © Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.

Sinusitis simply means inflammation of the sinuses, often caused by infection.

Our sinus surgeons offer minor procedures to alleviate your symptoms if medication alone fails to work. These include minimally invasive techniques that cause little pain or bleeding; some can be performed at an office visit.

Types of Sinusitis

  • Acute sinusitis lasts four weeks or less.
  • Chronic sinusitis lasts longer than 12 weeks.

Acute Sinusitis

Usually an infection, acute sinusitis occurs due to:

  • A virus that will go away on its own
  • Bacteria that may last more than two weeks and require antibiotics

Symptoms Beyond a Cold

In addition to common cold symptoms, like a runny nose, nasal drainage and nasal congestion, people with sinusitis also have facial or sinus pain and pressure. 

Chronic Sinusitis

Two types exist:

  • Without polyps: Inflammation, sometimes caused by allergies, can block sinuses and trap infection in the sinus.
  • With polyps: Noncancerous growths in the nose block sinuses

Treatment Options

Treatment aims to help the sinuses drain normally and end infection.

You may be able to clean nasal passages and reduce inflammation with:

  • Salt water washes, sprays or nasal rinses
  • Nasal decongestants
  • Antibiotics and/or steroids

Other steps that can loosen and thin the fluid in your sinuses include:

  • Hydrating — Drink lots of fluids
  • Steam treatments — Use a humidifier or breathe in the steam from hot water with a towel over your head

If these measures fail to work, surgical procedures may help.

Learn about the simple, effective sinus surgeries we offer.

Make an Appointment

Call us at 434.243.3675.


Content was created using EBSCO’s Health Library. Edits to original content made by Rector and Visitors of the University of Virginia. This information is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

Make an Appointment

Call us at 434.243.3675

or make an appointment online.