How to Treat a Sinus Cyst

Posted in: Sinus News  |  June 1, 2012 
How to Treat a Sinus Cyst

Over time, polyps can develop on the nasal passages or sinuses. These sinus cysts (also called nasal polyps) are noncancerous, and they look like grapes or teardrops clinging to the affected area. Left untreated, they sometimes can lead to infections, a dulled sense of smell and breathing trouble. These cysts can be tricky to treat – but there are a number of options to fight them off.

  • Medicine. Three types of medicines (antibiotics, corticosteroid oral medicines and nasal steroid sprays) are commonly recommended for treating these cysts. It’s worth noting that they’re only effective when used as directed – without missing doses.
  • Surgery. In more extreme cases, doctors might recommend either a polypectomy or endoscopic sinus surgery. With the first procedure, the polyps are surgically cut out and then vacuumed away. In the second surgery, a tube with a lens or camera attachment is guided through the nostrils and into the sinus cavities to help show where polyps should be cut out. Sometimes, surgeons will also make the openings from the nasal passages to the sinuses larger. Both surgical options are typically associated with an improvement rate of about 90 percent.

Doctors aren’t quite sure yet what causes sinus cysts, but they’re often linked to allergies, chronic inflammation from asthma, sensitivity to certain medications and some immune disorders. Some evidence suggests that people who develop sinus cysts have different chemical markers in their mucous membranes and exhibit different immune system responses than those who aren’t affected.

The polyps are most common in adults but can affect people of any age. There’s a notable risk of recurrence, so it’s especially important that people who get these growths listen to a doctor’s advice and heed any follow-up advice after treatment.

If you believe that sinus cysts might be affecting you, we recommend that you speak with a doctor to evaluate the situation. We’re here to help anytime, so feel free to contact us by phone or email with questions.