What is Sinusitis?

Sinusitis refers to the swelling or inflammation of the sinus mucous membrane. This swelling causes the sinus openings that normally drain mucous to be blocked. Mucous then stagnates, causing facial pain and headaches besides attracting viral or bacterial infections. Sinusitis will almost always happen after rhinitis and rarely occurs alone. As the nasal and sinus passages are so closely inter related, otolaryngologists now refer to sinusitis as rhinosinusitis. Globally, it has been established that about 51% of rhinosinusitis cases are caused by allergies.

Chronic rhinosinusitis is defined as a long-term sinus inflammation of about 12 weeks or more which keeps recurring despite treatment. The estimated prevalence of sinusitis in Malaysia is about 13% equating to about 3.5 million Malaysians.