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  • sinus headaches, but no infection

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    Old 02-26-2003, 04:59 PM   #1
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    Unhappy sinus headaches, but no infection

    Hello all.

    Since I was about 10 years old I have been having terrible sinus problems. When I was 12 I had surgery to remove a polyp from my left maxillary sinus when I was 12. Since then my sinus problems had been much much better. I would maybe get one or two infections a year, instead of 10 or 12 infections a year! So I was thinking that everything was going well. I'm 22 now, and have started having really bad sinus headaches again over the past few months. I have just begun student teaching in an elementary school, so I know that I am picking up all kinds of germs.

    Here is the problem now. Since about December of last year, I have been getting sinus infections very frequently. Or possibly just one infection that never went away. In late December I saw my Ear Nose and Throat specialist who put me on the anti-biotic Levaquin for 10 days. It seemed to have worked. But then in the middle of January I got another infection. I saw my primary care physician (had an appointment with him for something else, so while I was there he looked in my sinuses). He gave me the anti-biotic Avelox for 10 days. That really didn't work. By that time my throat was starting to hurt really badly too. So, I went back to my PCP and he said that he didn't want to be the one to continue to treat me for this, because an ENT specialist would know better what to do. So I went back and saw my ENT. He ordered a sinus CT Scan and he cultured my nose and throat. Much to my surprise, there is ABSOLUTELY NOTHING wrong with my sinuses! At least, nothing showed up on the scan. The only problem that they found is that I've got an impacted wisdom tooth up in my sinuses. But that has been there for years. So, the throat/nose culture came back and apparently I now have some form of Strep. I am now on 500mg of Ceftin twice a day for 5 days. Then if I still don't feel any better I have to go back and see the ENT dr again. I have also had a low grade fever (99.5-100) on and off for about the last month. I only started on the Ceftin yesterday, but it does seem that the fever is starting to go away.

    I don't mean to gross anybody out, but I also have to tell you that I am constantly coughing up green, yellow, and sometimes brown mucus. I also have the same colors coming out of my nose! My nose is extremely congested and I am constantly dizzy and have a lot of pressure in and around my nose and above my eyes. I never knew that strep could cause all of this! My dr is a little difficult to understand because he speaks with an accent and is very soft spoken. He gave me the results of the culture over the phone, and I think I may have heard him say something about infected adenoids or strep in the back of my nose (if this is possible). But if I don't have any sinus problems (as proven by the scan), then what the heck is this all from?

    I am not currently taking any sort of oral anti-histamines or decongestants, because I can't. I have extremely severe dry eyes and could possibly develop an eye ulcer (already had one of those!) if I take anything that could potentially dry me out like an anti-histamine or decongestant. I may end up having to take one just to get rid of this once and for all, but I really really don't want to. I am using the nasal spray Astelin, 2 sprays in each nostril once a day, as well as a saline nasal spray several times a day and also a saline nasal gel to keep my nose moisturized so I don't get the nose bleeds that have become so common with me. (I sometimes wake up in the morning with a bloody nose!) I sleep with a warm air humidifier on in my bedroom because of the dry eye problem. It has done wonders for my eyes, but I am wondering if it has in any way harmed my sinuses due to the excess humidity. It is a germ free, mold free, dust free humidifier (it's got special absorption pads and a UV light to prevent the germs and mold). I also use an air purifier in the bedroom at night when I sleep, and I have allergy covers on all of my pillows and my mattress.

    But I still have these persistant sinus headaches and all of this congestion! What do I do? I am also going to post this question on the allergy board, but if anyone has any suggestions for me, please help!

    Thank you so much,

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    Old 02-26-2003, 07:09 PM   #2
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    Since you mention coughing up colored mucous you need to ask the doc to order a sputum culture to find out what is going on. As for the chronic sinus problems you should definately start taking a good antioxidant supplement to help keep this at a bare minimum. If the impacted wisdom tooth is part of the problem too then you need to see the dentist about getting this removed. Severe sinusitis can be just as painful as a sinus infection speaking from personal experience. I have only had one bout with severe sinusitis since starting the antioxidant supplements and that was during a time when I ran out of them and didn't take any for a week and a half. Nothing like learning your lesson the hard way. Get your sputum cultured and check into getting that tooth pulled. Good Luck.

    Old 02-27-2003, 02:43 PM   #3
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    Yeah, I think I forgot to mention that my ENT specialist cultured my sputum on saturday. It came back as some sort of strep infection (I think) that's in both the nose and the throat, if that's possible. As I said before, my dr was kind of difficult to understand on the phone. Also, I am not sure if I spoke with the receptionist or the nurse when I called to get the results of the culture, but whoever it was, she was not very helpful. I called and asked if I could come in because I had a fever and was really feeling sick. She said "no, we don't see patients who have a fever". ummmmm.....OK...... why not?????? So I left a message for the dr to call me, and was told he'd be calling me back after hours, around 9:30pm. This was around 4:30 in the afternoon. So, I went out. My cell phone rang as I was driving and I pulled over and answered it. It was my mom saying that the dr called back and he wanted me to be on Avelox. But I distinctly told him that Avelox did not work for me, and I had just had a 10 day course of it. So, I called back and spoke with the receptionist again...... I said "can someone tell me what the results of the lab test showed....why do I need an anti-biotic?" She said "it showed that you have a germ". (duh!) So I said "OK........what kind of germ?" She said "a bacterial one" (once again, DUH!!!!!) OBVIOUSLY I have some sort of bacterial germ! Tell me something that I DON'T KNOW! So, I remained calm and explained that I wanted a different anti-biotic than the one he wanted to prescribe. So finally, the dr got on the phone and I believe he said something about the lab finding some sort of strep bacteria in my culture, and that it was probably in my throat and my adenoids. But my question is, can that cause all of this colored mucus?

    What kind of anti-oxidants would you recommend? I take about 2500mg of flax seed oil per day, but I don't think that really classifies as an anti-oxidant. What is considered to be an anti-oxidant?

    Thanks a lot,

    Old 02-28-2003, 03:08 AM   #4
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    What is known as Strep throat is very common and affects the respiratory tract as a whole, so you can catch a cold and then get a secondary strep infection. So yes, it can affect everywhere.

    If you are coughing up green/yellow sputum, you are not thirsty, are better for fresh air and generally feel a bit miserable with this, then I would suggest that you take some PULSATILLA 6/30x three times a day for a couple of days.

    If you have a lot of pain however and this has gone quite deep in your chest and you are coughing up the gree/yellow sputum, your throat or chest are painful, you feel very chilly and irritable with it, then I would suggest that you take a remedy called HEPAR SULPH in a 6/30x to see if this works.

    You can get these remedies from healthfood stores.

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