Getting Rid Of Sinus Fungus

Published: 12th May 2010
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Fungi normally live by absorbing nutrients and water from dead organisms. But, in the case of sinus fungus, the live human body becomes the breeding ground as the fungus feeds off the body's nutrients and materials, such as the mucus. Once it makes contact with the sinuses, it can stick around for months or years until an effective treatment has been administered. Some of the symptoms to watch out for are headaches, chronic nasal congestion, pain and pressure in the infected sinuses.

Sinus fungus can be classified as invasive or non-invasive. Invasive sinus fungi, although quite rare, cause severe problems among those who are infected with it. These invade and penetrate the mucosal tissues lining the sinuses, the blood vessels near the sinuses and in some cases, the bone of the sinuses.

In non-invasive sinus fungi, on the other hand, the mucus becomes the 'host' for the pathogen. Patients of asthma, allergic rhinitis, nasal polyps as well as chronic sinusitis are known to harbor this type. From these two classifications come the other four types of fungal sinus conditions.

Fungal ball - Usually occurring in the maxillary sinuses, this type presents symptoms similar with bacterial sinusitis. The culprit is the sinus fungus called Aspergillus, a pathogen that comes from the common bread mold family.

Treatment for fungal ball typically involves the removal of the fungal ball formation using endoscopic sinus surgery.

Allergic fungal rhinitis - The most common among the four types, allergic fungal rhinitis is caused by pathogens from the Dematiaceous family. Again, the symptoms that may result from this type of infection are somewhat similar with those presented by patients of bacterial sinusitis with the addition of thick nasal discharge and the formation of nasal polyps.

The treatments for allergic fungal rhinitis often involve the use of endoscopic sinus surgery which targets the removal of the fungal elements as well as the creation of a hole within the route of the mucus drainage to promote better nasal discharge. Other treatments such as topical and systemic steroids, antibiotics, nasal irrigations, antihistamines, and anti-fungal medications can also be administered.

Acute or Chronic Invasive Fungal Sinusitis - This is the least common and the most serious type of fungal sinusitis. It is characterized by the penetration of the fungi into the tissues, muscles and bones of the infected sinuses. The acute type poses worse risks to the patient as it tends to develop much faster than chronic fungal sinusitis.

If you have a compromised immune system, you are more likely to be affected with acute invasive fungal sinusitis. Otherwise, if your immune system is normal, you are likely to suffer from chronic invasive fungal sinusitis. Either way, you are exposed to an often-fatal condition.

A combination of surgical intervention and medications that fight off the sinus fungus or fungi will bring about relief from symptoms.

Additional Tips on Treating Fungal Sinusitis

• The first line of defense against invading pathogens is a healthy body. Always ensure that your immune system defenses are fortified.

• Corticosteroids, according to clinical evidence, have been shown to effectively reduce the recurrence of fungal sinusitis after surgery.

• If you are suffering from any type of fungal sinusitis, avoid blowing or irrigating your nose. Doing so will aid the fungi to spread to the inner parts of your sinuses.

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