What causes sinus disease? 

There are a number of factors that cause and/or contribute to sinus disease that we know about and many others that we do not.  There are some aspects of peoples nasal anatomy that have been shown to increase the likelihood of infections (i.e. septal deviations or crooked nasal septum).  Certainly allergy or viral infections (i.e. the common cold) can contribute to sinusitis in that they lead to swelling of the nasal and sinus lining.  Allergy and viruses, however, are not the primary cause.  It is often many different things added up together than lead to the condition.

There are many people, however, whose cause of their sinus problems is unknown.  This is particularly the case in people who have nasal polyps.  In these individuals inflammation or swelling is the primary problem and it is not a true infection.  Where this inflammation comes from is unknown.  Some patients have this issue for decades whereas some develop it later in life.  It is similar to the inflammation that occurs in asthma, and many patients have both.

* Note: The information contained in these pages is for educational purposes only. It should not be construed as individualized diagnostic and treatment advice.