How to diagnose a sinus infection 

is a sinus infection contagious
Woman with headache. Seasonal allergies and health problems. Sinus ache causing very paintful headache. Unhealthy woman in pain. Sharp strong sore. Flu cold or allergy symptom. Sinus pain, sinusitis.

Sinusitis is inflammation of the lining of the is a sinus infection contagious paranasal sinuses that can be caused by a fungus, bacteria or virus, or by an allergy. 

The paranasal sinuses are small holes filled with air. They are divided into frontal sinuses (they are in the frontal part of the skull, located above the nose, that is, in the forehead), ethmoid sinuses (they are located on the sides of the nose, between the bones) and maxillary sinuses (located in cheeks).

In normal situations, air passes through the breasts without a problem is a sinus infection contagious; However, people with sinusitis have these spaces blocked and suffer discomfort and difficulties when it comes to breathing.

Therefore, a question can be raised, is a sinus infection contagious? You need to know that. So, are you willing to know how to diagnose sinus infection? Continue reading this guide. 


Inflammation of the sinus mucosa (sinusitis) is normally associated with inflammation of the mucosa of the nasal cavity (rhinitis), then called rhinosinusitis.

It is a very common pathology in the general population, which is why a multitude usually sees it of specialists. It can present with a wide variety of symptoms and, in some cases, it can have a significant impact on the quality of life of patients.


The main causes of this pathology is a sinus infection contagious are infections, whether viral (the most frequent), bacterial and fungal. 

There are other causes related to the inflammatory mechanisms and the immune system of the patient himself, which, despite its implications being widely demonstrated, the exact mechanism is still unknown.

Climatic variations: colder seasons and increased humidity predispose to a greater probability of suffering from sinusitis.

Tobacco: Both being an active smoker and being exposed to its smoke is a predisposing factor in this pathology.

Did you have that question on your mind that is a sinus infection contagious? You may have asked, but you need to find the answer. 

Assess your symptoms

The main symptoms of this disease are:

Pain and pressure behind the eyes and in the maxillofacial area.

Runny nose and congestion.

Fatigue and feeling of general discomfort.

Headache or headache.


Cough, which tends to get worse at night.

In acute sinusitis, these symptoms usually appear after the seventh day of a cold that has not improved or has even worsened. In the case of chronic sinusitis, the symptoms are the same, although milder.

Although complications are rare, sinusitis can lead to an abscess (the appearance of pus in a certain area that causes pain and inflammation), meningitis, osteomyelitis, and skin infection around the eyes.

When to go to the doctor?

You should go to a specialist in any of these cases:

Symptoms last more than 14 days or a cold worsens after seven days.

Fever develops.

He suffers from a severe headache.

Symptoms persist after taking antibiotic treatment.

Some change in vision is noted during infection.


Prevention is primarily based on avoiding predisposing factors, say SEORL-CCC members. “Avoiding or reducing contact with pollutants, tobacco smoke, and toxins can reduce the probability of sinusitis or decrease symptoms. 

On the other hand, avoiding contact with infectious agents with good hygiene measures also reduces sinus rates, especially in the case of acute ones”.

Tips to avoid sinusitis:

Increase the humidity of the body and the sinus tract by consuming fluids, especially water, and using a humidifier.

Quickly and effectively tackle allergies.

Avoid smoke and polluting spaces.


There are two types of sinusitis, which are determined by the duration of the disease and its symptoms:

Acute sinusitis: its duration is less than 12 weeks. It is a very frequent pathology, and it is estimated prevalence between 6 and 15 per cent. Mainly caused by viral infections and sometimes known as a common cold. It is more common in winter times.

It is estimated that 0.5 and 2 per cent of these acute viral rhinosinusitis will become bacterial, characterized than by the presence of purulent mucus, fever, severe unilateral pain, worsening after the onset of recovery. In these cases, the use of systemic antibiotics is indicated.

Chronic sinusitis: its duration is equal to or greater than 12 weeks, with an estimated prevalence of between 2 and 16 per cent of the population. There are two main types: with and without polyps. 

Due to its chronic course and its annoying symptoms, the most serious subtypes of this sinusitis can generate a great alteration in the quality of life of the patient.

In addition to bacteria, it can also be caused by fungi.


When presenting any of these symptoms, the patient should see their doctor or otolaryngologist as soon as possible. What is sought to avoid is that the situation worsens and becomes chronic sinusitis.

It is advisable to carry out a series of exploratory tests before making your diagnosis. First, the face will be palpated to detect if there are any pains (pains) in some of the anatomical areas of the paranasal sinuses.

Perform an anterior rhinoscopy to examine the nose for possible anatomical changes and assess the state of permeability of the nostrils.

The test that will provide us with the most information is nasal endoscopy. This study will allow the doctor to see what is happening inside the nasal cavity. 

And this can be a perfect answer to the question of is a sinus infection contagious because it isn’t to cure this disease naturally at all. 

A small endoscope is used, which can be flexible or rigid, made of fibre optics, which allows us to see what the state of the nasal mucosa is and assess how the meatuses or spaces that delineate the turbinates are.

If there are still doubts about it, computed tomography and magnetic resonance can also be used, studies that allow better observation of the bones and tissues in the face and nasal area. The resonance is especially useful to rule out any type of tumour.

It is a very common pathology, so it is usually attended by a multitude of specialists and general practitioners. 

In most cases, the diagnosis is clinical, based on the symptoms, since they do not reach a specialist in Otorhinolaryngology. 

However, in those cases that are chronic or that do not improve with treatment, it would be advisable to perform a nasal endoscopy to rule out the presence of polyps or other alterations.

Besides, in some cases, it may also be necessary to perform an imaging test such as computed tomography (CT) or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).

Specifically, the following tests and exams are available:

Rhinoscopy: is a nasal endoscopy through which a tube is inserted to view the paranasal sinuses.

CT scan — to view the paranasal openings and to see the condition of the tissues and bones.

We know that magnetic resonance: to check the possible presence of tumours and infections in the paranasal sinuses.

Transillumination: the specialist projects a light against the breasts to check if they are inflamed or occupied.

Pressing on the sinus area to cause pain, which means there is infection or inflammation.


The treatment of acute sinusitis is mainly based on symptomatic treatment. Pain analgesia, nasal washes with saline, intranasal corticosteroids, or nasal decongestants may be helpful. Although in most cases, they do not change the course of the disease, symptoms improve during it.

Systemic antibiotics are recommended in patients with acute sinusitis and risk factors such as fever, purulent mucus, and unilateral pain due to suspected bacterial superinfection.

In some more severe cases, short courses of oral corticosteroids can be very helpful. In the case of chronic sinusitis, treatment is mainly based on intranasal corticosteroids. 

Nasal lavages with saline solutions improve the treatment effect by removing the mucus that covers the nasal mucosa. In flare-ups, regimens of systemic corticosteroids and short courses of systemic antibiotics are often necessary.

In other cases, long courses of antibiotics have also shown benefit. If the clinic persists after correct medical treatment, patients could benefit from surgery – to widen the openings and drain the sinuses.

Self-care can also help reduce sinus congestion. In the case of sinusitis, the following recommendations can be taken into account to treat and reduce the symptoms of this pathology:

  • Drink plenty of fluids to dilute secretions.
  • Inhale steam, two to four times a day
  • Use a humidifier to reduce environmental dryness.
  • Apply hot, wet cloths to the face several times a day.
  • Use nasal decongestants.

Other data

Sinusitis complications:

Most of the complications that can appear from sinusitis are due to the structures adjacent to the paranasal sinuses.

Asthma crisis: Chronic sinusitis can trigger breathing difficulties and asthma attacks.

Vision problems: If the infection spreads to the eye, it can cause loss of vision or even

Symptoms of acute sinusitis

The first symptoms of acute sinusitis could appear approximately one week after the patient suffers from an untreated or insufficiently treated cold, which makes the symptoms worse. The most common symptoms are:

Headache (headache). The pressure that is bothersome and can become painful in the eye, gum, and cheek areas. The pain on the affected breast intensifies with physical effort.

Obstruction and / or nasal congestion, generally bilateral but can occur unilaterally.

In most cases, acute sinusitis responds well to standard medical treatment, but there are approximately a third of cases that do not.

Symptoms of chronic sinusitis

In the case of chronic sinusitis, the symptoms are less evident, presenting some symptoms such as nasal obstruction, persistent mucoid rhinorrhea, hyposmia, tubal symptoms, etc..

There is a wide variety of causes that could be causing sinusitis. Hence, a detailed study by the otorhinolaryngologist is necessary to determine what may be the cause that affects the patient. Among them, we have an allergy, cilia disorders, vasomotor rhinitis.

Generally speaking, sinusitis occurs when the openings (ostium) of the sinuses are obstructed, and mucoid secretions accumulate in the paranasal sinuses. This situation allows bacteria to grow more easily.

Among the most common causes we find:

Infection and/or inflammation of the nasal ciliary mucosa causing an alteration to drive the mucosa out of the paranasal sinuses, causing the obstruction.

Infectious rhinitis and allergies.

We know that obstruction of the paranasal sinuses due to excess mucosa when suffering from cold or severe allergies.

We also know that paranasal sinus obstruction due to anatomic problems, such as a deviated septum, hypertrophic turbinates, a nasal bone spur, or the appearance of nasal polyps.

In children, hypertrophy of the adenoid tissue (vegetations) should be added.

Sinusitis risk factors

Regardless of the causes that sinusitis may have, it is often caused by factors caused by himself.

Among the risk factors that have the greatest influence on the development of sinusitis, we find:

The patient may be having submerged in contaminated water, exposing the body and especially the nose to infectious agents and microorganisms.

Allergic rhinitis.

Cystic fibrosis.

Altitude changes where the pressure is considerable, either diving deep or travelling by plane.

Immune deficiencies, often caused by HIV / AIDS.


Sinus is becoming a common problem for many of us. When it comes to curing sinus problem, we have to consider some common factors. This article tells you exactly about that. 

So, that’s all on how to diagnose sinus infection. Have you got your answer on is a sinus infection contagious? Hopefully, you have got your answer. Do let us know if you have any queries about this anymore. 


How does a doctor tell if you have a sinus infection?

Your doctor will consult about your outward symptoms, and then he’ll look inside your nose. He might start with the otoscope, an instrument which assists health practitioners to examine the nose and ear.

Indications of swelling, congestion is a symbol of your sinus infection, and your doctor can identify that very easily. 

Can sinus infection get cured naturally?

Sinus congestion as well as the Typical cold, regrettably, move hand in hand. Intense sinusitis usually is caused by the typical cold, however besides may be directly caused by allergies along with bacterial and fungal ailments. About 70 per cent of sinus infections extend off within two weeks without antibiotics.

What is the medication of sinus infection?

Amoxicillin (Amoxil) is appropriate for straightforward acute sinus diseases. Nevertheless, many doctors prescribe amoxicillin-clavulanate (Augmentin) because the first-line antibiotic to take care of a possible bacterial illness of these sinuses.



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