Johnny was treated for Chronic Sinusitis and Otitis Media with Effusion (fluid in middle ear) at a medical center for months. He had been taking the best antibiotics without much improvements. As his mother insisted on not undergoing surgery, they came to our clinic. I asked him to stop taking any previous medications including antibiotics, and instead prescribed him with two types of Antacids, and asked him to use pulsatile nasal irrigation twice per day.
After a week, they came back happily and told me his thick nasal discharge had decreased significantly. When I further checked his middle ear, the thick yellow fluid had turned into light transparent, and his hearing test had shown great improvement.
A traditionally treated with antibiotic/surgery patient experiences significant improvement with only pulstaile nasal irrigation and antacids.
Many Chronic Sinusitis patients ask me: "Why do you only prescribe daily use of Antacids, does Antacids actually treat Sinusitis? I've never seen a doctor treat Sinusitis like this?" In fact, not only do patients wonder about this, most doctors have never experience with this kind of treatment method. Even though many doctors realize that Acid Reflux is one of the causes of Sinusitis, very few actively use Antacids toward Chronic Sinusitis. Naturally, Antacids is only part of the solution, the combination use of pulsatile nasal irrigation is key to obtain optimal result.
If Acid Reflux does not improve, Sinusitis cannot be treated even with the use of the best Antibiotics and surgery.
In 1996, University of Missouri's medical team's research report indicates up to 60% of pediatric sinusitis patients who needed surgery shown clinical symptoms improvements after the use of Antacids. Following that, many more medical researches have proven the connection of Acid Reflux and Chronic Sinusitis. If Acid Reflux does not improve, Sinusitis cannot be treated even with the use of best the Antibiotics and surgery.
Many people wonder the connection between Acid Reflux and Chronic Sinusitis. In the day, when you stand or sit, the distance between your sinus and stomach is quite far that even during Acid Reflux, you would only feel the burn at your chest and/or throat. The acid is not likely to stimulate your sinus or nasal mucous membrane. However, when you sleep at night, your sinus and stomach rest at about the same height. At this time, your stomach acid is very likely to stimulate your sinus and mucous membrane causing inflammation or thickens, thus resulting in sinusitis or Otitis Media with Effusion. Since this occurs at night after you fall asleep, most patients do not feel the Acid Reflux.
If you experience occasional Acid Reflux or slight stomach discomfort in the morning, you are likely to have Acid Reflux at night. Even if you don't experience any stomach discomfort by day, Acid Reflux after you sleep is still possible.
Recently, an elder professor came to the clinic with recurring Otitis Media Effusion. Even though I highly suspected Acid Reflux as the root cause, the professor claimed his stomach was perfectly fine and that he never experienced any related discomfort. After a gastroscopy, the test proved that he in fact, had Acid Reflux.
In recent years, when I asked Chronic Sinusitis patients about their stomach, over 80% of them complains about stomach discomfort and/or Acid Reflux. Nowadays, I have Antacids listed as routine medication for Chronic Sinusitis. At the same time, I would suggest patients to prevent eating 2-3 hours before sleep, maintain regular diet and avoid deep fried food and caffeinated drinks. Most importantly, remember to release your stress, relax, and be happy.