What Kind of Sinusitis Is It?
Sinusitis is one of those fuzzy terms that is often more descriptive than diagnostic. Many lay people know that the suffix -itis refers to irritation or inflammation, and does not speak to any particular cause or culprit. Sinusitis bedevils doctors for precisely this reason: when a patient presents with severe pain and pressure, it isn’t always immediately clear whether the root cause is bacterial or viral.
Now a new team of researchers believe they may have found a quick way to determine the answer. At stake is more than the psychic comfort of an accurate diagnosis: millions of unnecessary antibiotic prescriptions are filled each year for viral sinusitis, and the cumulative effect of these scripts can be seen in the rise of drug-resistant bacteria:
ENTvantage will develop a kit for swabbing a patient’s nose and getting test results the next day, based on a signature protein in bacterial infections. Co-founder Joe Skraba said in a statement the test would have uses in other infections caused by the same bacteria . . . . “Many patients are being prescribed antibiotics that they do not need or do not optimally treat the underlying pathogenic bacteria because there is a lack of definitive office-based diagnostic tests for this infection,” Das said in a statement.
Let us hope the test works out as planned, and that doctors can rein in antibiotic overuse as a result. Until that time, if you are suffering from sinusitis and want a restrained medical approach, please visit the LA sinus doctors today.