Sinusitis Overview

An overview by Acclarent

Sinusitis affects 37 million people each year, making it one of the most common health problems in the U.S.  It is more prevalent than heart disease and asthma and has a greater impact on quality of life than chronic back pain or congestive heart failure.  Symptoms may significantly affect people physically, functionally, and emotionally.


The Role of the Sinuses

To understand sinusitis, it is important to first learn about your sinuses and their role with your health. 

The sinuses are air spaces behind the bones of the upper face, between the eyes and behind the forehead, nose and cheeks.  The sinuses are covered with a mucus layer and cells that contain little hairs on their surfaces called cilia. These help trap and push out bacteria and pollutants.


Each sinus has an opening that allows mucous to drain – this drainage is essential to keeping your sinuses working well and you healthy.  Anything that obstructs that flow may cause a buildup of mucus in the sinuses. 

Experts agree that healthy sinuses are a key to a good quality of life and that unhealthy sinuses may cause some unwanted complications.

Facts About Sinusitis

  • Sinusitis affects approximately 14% of the adult U.S. population.

  • Sinusitis affects 17% of women and 10% of men each year.

  • Chronic sinusitis (not including acute sinusitis) results annually in an estimated 18-22 million physician office visits.

  • Direct healthcare expenditures due to sinusitis cost are well over $8 billion each year.**

  • Total restricted activity days due to sinusitis are well over 73 million per year.


**Inflation Adjusted.

What are the Symptoms of Chronic Sinusitis 

Sinusitis (also called rhinosinusitis) is the name of the condition in which the lining of your sinuses becomes inflamed.  The sinuses are air spaces behind the bones of the upper face, between the eyes and behind the forehead, nose and cheeks


Normally, the sinuses drain through small openings into the inside of the nose. Anything that blocks the flow may cause a buildup of mucus in the sinuses.  The blockage and inflammation of the sinus membranes can be infectious or non-infectious. 

The symptoms caused by sinusitis may be quite uncomfortable.  The signs and symptoms may include:

  • Facial pain, pressure, congestion or fullness 

  • Difficulty breathing through the nose

  • Discharge of yellow or green mucus from the nose 

  • Teeth pain

  • Loss of the sense of smell or taste

  • Headache 

  • Fatigue

  • Sore throat

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Dr. Franklin Douglis is Board Certified by the American Board of Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery (Ear, Nose, and Throat) and has passed his certification in Sleep Medicine.  Dr. Douglis is a recent Diplomate of the American Board of Obesity Medicine.  He attended the University Of Maryland School Of Medicine and completed his specialty training at the University of Maryland Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland. He has a strong interest in general health and overall wellness.  Dr. Douglis has been practicing medicine in Conroe, Montgomery County Texas, Spring, Harris County Texas and the Houston area since 1982.  This site is intended for U.S. Residents only.

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