Why Do My Sinuses Affect My Throat?
Chronic sinusitis is a condition that can cause laryngeal irritation by the drip of infected and inflammatory substances onto the vocal cords. Most patients with chronic sinus infections feel sinus pressure or pain, but occasionally the only presenting symptom of sinusitis is chronic cough or hoarseness with a sensation of postnasal drainage.
Treatment of chronic sinusitis varies with the severity and anatomic problems as well as the cause of the infection (bacterial or fungal). Treatment may require antibiotics, mucolytics, sinus rinses (saline or medicated rinses), balloon sinus dilation, or traditional sinus surgery.
Evaluation of the nose and sinuses for the patient with hoarseness is an important part of the visit. Allergies can also cause swelling of the lining of the nose and sinuses and may contribute to nasal polyps which can block sinuses. Allergy testing can determine if immunotherapy is an option for treatment. Immunotherapy is beneficial to the singer or speaker with hoarseness from allergies as it eliminates the need for drying antihistamines and nasal sprays.