When Sinus Distress is a Symptom, Not a Cause
I have spent time discussing before how sinus issues may be misunderstood. Sometimes they can be easily confused with a common cold or allergies; other times chronic sinus distress may even be a harbinger of cancer.
An interesting article recently discussed another way that sinus symptoms can be a signal of something more serious: via inflammation. Your sinuses are some of the most densely vascularized tissue in the human body,which means they have a higher density of blood vessels closer to the air than you can find in other places. So it’s not surprising that diseases which carry a distinctive inflammation signature may initially present as sinus symptoms.
Case in point: autoimmune diseases. In the linked article, a patient who started with sinus symptoms eventually began to experience joint pain and worse:
He returned to his doctor, who performed blood tests and a CT scan of his lungs. On Nov. 21, 2011, Nelson received a diagnosis: Wegener’s Granulomatosis, an autoimmune disease in which blood vessels become inflamed, making it hard for blood to flow throughout the body.
The disease mainly affects blood vessels in the nose, sinuses, ears, lungs and kidneys, which explains why doctors initially thought Nelson had a sinus infection and then pneumonia.
Chronic sinusitis and sinus ailments can occasionally be symptoms of a more systemic medical condition. If you have suffered with these symptoms for many months or years, it is time to visit an expert Los Angeles sinus surgeon right away.