If sinusitis (also called sinus infection) is suspected, you should consult your GP or an ENT specialist. Based on the description of your symptoms they can identify a possible sinus infection. It is important to make sure your symptoms, such as headache, are not caused by other medical conditions. Evidence of nasal mucus and typical pressure and percussion pain in the sinus region clarify the diagnosis. Symptoms getting worse when you bend your upper body forwards are also typical.
Purulent mucus running down the back of the throat can be a sign of an acute sinus infection.
The symptoms are less obvious in cases of chronic sinusitis. Usually patients experience difficulty breathing through the nose and an uncomfortable sense of pressure. An impaired sense of small or snoring are also possible.
If chronic sinusitis is suspected, the doctor looks at the inside of the nose. Using an optical instrument they can assess if the mucous membranes are reddened and swollen. Blocked or possibly purulent mucus is also evident. For further clarification of chronic sinusitis, the doctor may perform an ultrasound examination of the cranium. An allergy test may also be performed to determine if the symptoms are a reaction to allergy triggers.
In some cases further imaging tests such as X-ray, computer tomography (CT) or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) can be used alongside ultrasound. In unclear, difficult or chronic cases they provide information on the anatomical conditions. These examinations are also used to plan and prepare an operation.
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