The study finds that endoscopic sinus surgery to clear clogged sinuses can bring significant pain relief. "Bodily pain is not listed as a symptom of chronic sinusitis in general medical texts or journals and as a result, patients are sometimes diagnosed with unrelated conditions such as arthritis, depression, fibromyalgia or chronic fatigue syndrome," says the study's author Alexander C. Chester. "Unfortunately, this leaves too many people unaware of treatments for sinusitis that can improve their overall condition."
The purpose of the study was to determine if elevated levels of bodily pain were associated with sinusitis and to examine whether bodily pain improved following endoscopic sinus surgery. Chester and his colleagues performed a meta-analysis of eleven studies which included a general, health-related quality-of-life survey with a separate assessment of bodily pain before and after endoscopic sinus surgery on a scale of zero (most bodily pain) to 100 (least bodily pain).
"We found that the daily experience of bodily pain was much more common in patients with sinusitis than in the overall population," explains Chester. "Confirmation that aches and pains occur with sinus disease is a relief to many patients who thought they had two separate illnesses."
In addition to their findings about the pervasiveness of pain, a majority of the studies analysed showed that following endoscopic sinus surgery, postoperative bodily pain scores improved to values similar to that in the general population.
"Having data showing that pain will improve after sinus surgery is particularly helpful when considering the merits of undergoing surgery when medications fail," explains Chester. He says more than 200,000 endoscopic sinus surgeries are done annually in the United States using a technique considered less invasive and much safer than older methods.
MEDICA.de; Source: Georgetown University Medical Center