About 134 million Indians suffer from chronic sinusitis.
About 134 million Indians suffer from chronic sinusitis.(Photo: iStockphoto)
  • 1. What is Sinusitis?
  • 2. Types of Sinusitis
  • 3. Sinusitis and Pollution
  • 4. Before You See the Doctor
Prone to Sinusitis? Air Pollution in Your City is Making It Worse

India is greatly afflicted by sinusitis, a condition that involves inflaming of sinuses (the air cavities in the nasal passage) in your nose. About 134 million Indians suffer from chronic sinusitis, according to the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID). The disease affects one in every eight Indians.

While several Indians struggle with a congested nasal and throat lining, doctors believe that metropolitan cities like Delhi and Mumbai are more likely to see higher instances of sinusitis, owing to their pollution levels.

Some common symptoms of sinusitis involve prolonged cold, congested nose, headaches and fever. Here’s a closer breakdown of the medical problem.

  • 1. What is Sinusitis?

    Were you ever at a receiving end of a cold that left you with a massive headache, perhaps one that even made blinking painful, as you struggled to breathe? This is what acute sinusitis feels like for many who grapple with the condition.

    About 134 million Indians suffer from chronic sinusitis.
    The condition is caused by anything that blocks the sinus openings in the nasal passage
    (Photo: iStockphoto)

    Dr Sanjay Sachdeva, Director, ENT - Head & Neck Surgery and Cochlear Implant, Max Super Speciality Hospital, Saket, defines sinusitis in the following manner.

    Sinusitis is the infection in the air filled cavities around the eyes which are called sinuses. Sinuses help the nose to perform function of filtration, humidification and temperature regulation. They communicate with the nose through small openings known as ostia. Disease of these openings cause sinuses to get blocked, infected and lead to sinusitis.
    Dr Sanjay Sachdeva

    Effectively, the condition is caused by anything that blocks the sinus openings in the nasal passage. Pollution, a common cold, nasal products like sprays and drops, allergies, smoking - potentially any of these could trigger sinusitis. In cities where pollution is a regular problem, it could also become chronic.

    Too caught up to read? Listen to the story here:

    Though sinus does not kill, it causes great pain and discomfort and is as widespread in the country as diabetes or cardiovascular problems, points out a report by The Times of India.

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