Adjuvant Therapies Acute Bacterial Sinusitis

Patients with a viral URTI may benefit from symptomatic therapy, aimed at improving their quality of life during the acute illness. The use of normal saline as a spray or lavage can provide symptomatic improvement by liquefying secretions to encourage drainage. The short-term (three days) use of topical alpha-adrenergic decongestants can also provide symptomatic relief, but their use should be restricted to older children and adults due to the potential for undesirable systemic effects in infants and young children. Topical glucocorticosteroids may also be useful in reducing nasal mucosal edema, mostly in those cases where a patient who has seasonal allergic rhinitis develops the complication of an acute URTI. The antipyretic and analgesic effects of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory agents can relieve or ameliorate the associated symptoms of fever, headache, generalized malaise, and facial tenderness. Until the clinical diagnosis of acute bacterial sinusitis is established, management of an URTI should be only symptomatic. Furthermore, symptomatic care can be useful in the management of acute bacterial sinusitis as adjunctive therapy, but no adjunct, has been shown essential in improving the outcome achieved by antimicrobial therapy or effective in preventing the development of acute bacterial sinusitis in persons who have a viral URTI or allergic rhinitis.

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