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Acupuncture and Sinusitis


Sinusitis is one of the most common medical conditions, affecting more than 30 million people annually. Allergy and viral infections can trigger sinusitis and sinus headache. Symptoms may include nasal congestion, pain, cough, toothache, ear infection, fever, and general fatigue. Sinusitis often follows an upper respiratory infection (common cold) or an allergic reaction (hay fever).

Respiratory infections and allergic reactions can cause inflammation and swelling that prevents sinus drainage. Acupuncture and Chinese herbal therapy can reduce or eliminate symptoms of allergic and irritant sinusitis, including sinus headache and pain and effectively clears the sinuses and relieves congestion. Acupuncture is directed at correcting the underlying imbalance in the body’s energy (qi), and can prevent acute sinusitis from becoming chronic. A comprehensive treatment program combining acupuncture, Chinese herbal medicine, food therapy, and supplements can decrease inflammation, congestion, pain, constriction of bronchial passages, infection, and sensitivity to allergens.

Allopathic therapies may include antibiotics and steroids with surgery as an adjunctive treatment in some cases. Antibiotics are one of the most prescribed treatments for sinusitis. In early stages without infection, acupuncture may be used as an alternative treatment. In later stages, acupuncture may be integrated with other therapies. If there is an allergic or viral infection, acupoints will be selected which regulate and strengthen the immune system. The use of acupuncture and Chinese herbal therapy decreases the use of antibiotics and medication side effects.

Treatment is on a weekly basis initially. Depending on sinus condition, patients generally begin feeling better after three to five acupuncture treatments. For chronic symptoms, at least six to eight acupuncture sessions are recommended. The World Health Organization has stated acupuncture to be beneficial for diseases of the respiratory tract such as bronchitis and sinusitis. For more information about acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine for treatment of sinusitis contact Dr. Richard Browne at (305) 595-9500.