22 December 2007

Sinus Problems? Try the Neti Pot

Sinus infections were once my bane--and still get me down occasionally. Recently a friend demonstrated the use of the Neti Pot for sinus irrigation. My first observation of the proper use of the Neti Pot was rather whimsical, to say the least. I once recommended saline spray, but now I know what to recommend to my patients with chronic sinus problems--even those with acute draining sinusitis.
Flushing the nasal passages with a salt solution, or nasal irrigation, is a yoga tradition that dates back thousands of years.

But though it is already recommended by physicians for cleansing after sinus surgery, the practice is just catching on as an alternative treatment for nasal stuffiness caused by colds, sinusitis and allergies.

A study published last year in the Annals of Family Medicine found that nasal irrigation is safe, well-tolerated, inexpensive and effective.

The study, done by researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, also found that patients were able to do it at home with minimal training. Source

My friend swears by the Neti Pot, and so do others at the link above. Apparently these devices are even sold at Wal-Mart. The NeilMed plastic bottle sinus lavage apparently allows you to squeeze for extra pressure. If your sinuses are not draining, use caution. Be sure to follow the directions that come with the lavage device. Sinus lavage feels a bit strange at first, but it should not hurt.

From Newsalert via Instapundit


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Blogger Towards infinity said...

I agree. It works very well indeed. I used to use rhinomer but that is just expensive slightly desalinated sea water. Pity is my plastic neti pot doesn't allow to squeeze. when i last checked with a physician and she asked me what i do about sinusitis she had no idea what i meant by "using a neti pot" yeah well... actually she is an alergologist.

Saturday, 22 December, 2007  
Blogger al fin said...

Thanks for your confirmation, TI. The "pot" lavage does not allow you to squeeze, but other devices on the market allow one to apply pressure. You can even use a large syringe (without the needle) to generate a pressurised stream of saline.

Somehow I feel it will not be long before patients are telling their physicians about these devices en masse. An allergist, particularly, should learn about them--unless she just did not want to lose the repeat business.

Saturday, 22 December, 2007  
Blogger Towards infinity said...

Actually she is the assistant head doc at the local university clinic (so no worrying about repeat customers :-) ) and that question was when i participated in a clinical phase II trial for a new dust mite allergy treatment (cytos, swiss company) initial examination. Probably beeing too far from regular cases brings that along? Being all down into research and minute details blocks the view?

Saturday, 22 December, 2007  

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