The Role of an ENT Specialist in Diagnosing and Treating Sinus Infections

If you are experiencing congestion, sinus pressure, or a dampened sense of smell that significantly impacts your quality of life, an ENT specialist can help.

ENT doctors can also treat a wide range of throat, neck, and head issues, including ear ringing (tinnitus). They are uniquely qualified to identify underlying conditions and prescribe treatment options.


ENT doctors can help manage various problems that affect your ears, nose, and throat. These include ear infections, headaches, nose, and mouth problems such as nasal polyps or swollen tissue, dizziness, imbalance resulting from inner ear disorders like vertigo, and voice issues such as hoarseness.

Most sinus infections clear up after a week with medications and home care. However, if your symptoms don’t improve or worsen over time, you should see an ear, nose, and throat doctor. Signs that may indicate a sinus infection include a runny or stuffy nose, a cough that won’t stop, and pressure or pain in your forehead or cheeks.

Your ENT specialist will ask about your symptoms and perform a physical exam, including a careful look at the inside of your nose. They may also use a thin, lighted tube (endoscope) to examine your sinuses or take a sample of your mucus for testing. They might also order a CT scan to examine your sinuses and surrounding area.


If a person has symptoms of sinusitis that don’t respond to medications, an ENT specialist may recommend surgery. This removes swollen tissue, nasal polyps or growths, fluid, and blockages to allow normal sinus drainage. An ENT doctor can also prescribe medication, such as oral steroids, to control inflammation. These are vital medicines, so people should only take them under a doctor’s care.

Moreover, care services Farmington NM can diagnose sinusitis by taking a history of the symptoms, examining the nose and throat, and doing a CT scan or other diagnostic test. They can also take a culture from the sinuses to check for infection. If they find a sinus infection is caused by bacteria, they will prescribe antibiotics. Infections caused by viruses usually clear up without treatment.


A sinus infection can cause the lining of the nose and sinuses to swell up. This can prevent mucus from draining normally and lead to congestion and pain around the nose, cheeks, eyes, and forehead. It may result from viral or bacterial infection, but environmental irritants, medical conditions, and structural abnormalities such as a deviated septum can contribute to the state.

An ENT specialist will examine your symptoms and recommend treatment options. These may include antihistamines and nasal rinses. If the infection is bacterial, antibiotic therapy will be required.

When drug therapies don’t help, surgical treatments are available to open up blocked passages and make breathing easier. This is done using an endoscope inserted into the nose. It allows the surgeon to see a map of your anatomy and eliminates physical obstructions like enlarged turbinates or a deviated septum. Surgery can be performed in the office under local anesthesia. When it isn’t possible to resolve the problem, a referral to another specialty might be needed.


Millions of bacteria are in the nose, but they usually do not cause trouble as long as sinus drainage is unblocked. When a blockage occurs, these bacteria enter the sinuses, and the immune system responds by producing inflammation and swelling; thickening and tinting the mucus; bringing white blood cells to fight the infection; and making breathing difficult.

An ENT specialist can help you breathe easily again. They will examine you and take a history of your symptoms. Then they will use a variety of tests, including a nasal endoscope (a tube with a light and camera attached) and a CT scan. They will also swab your nose for a culture to test for bacteria.

Your ENT will prescribe decongestants to shrink swollen membranes in the nose and reduce congestion. These are available in pill, liquid, and nasal spray forms. Allergy treatments, like antihistamines and mucolytics, can also reduce the symptoms of chronic sinusitis. Board-certified Allergists often work with ENTs to maximize control of sinus and allergy problems through nonsurgical means.



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