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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    What is acute bacterial rhinosinusitis?

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    A/Prof Larry Kalish

    Ear Nose and Throat (ENT) Surgeon

    Most of us get colds. When the cold causes a blocked nose or facial congestion (blocked sinuses or pressure in the face) with discharge from the front of the nose or dropping down the back of the nose towards the throat, and it either lasts for more than 10 days or you have a second flare up after 5 days we consider that an acute postviral rhinosinusitis. If there are high fevers, bad pressure or pain esp on only one side and if the discharge changes to a darker colour and thicker then it is considered acute bacterial rhinosinusitis.
    This can go on for up to 4 weeks and slowly gets better. Most acute sinusitis episodes are NOT bacterial and therefore topical steroids and washes are more effective than antibiotics.

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