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Sinusitis is a common inflammation of the paranasal sinuses, the cavities that produce the mucus necessary for the nasal passages to work effectively.


It can be acute or chronic, and it can be caused by viruses, bacteria, fungi, allergies, or even an autoimmune reaction.


Although uncomfortable and painful, sinusitis often goes away without medical intervention. However, if symptoms last more than 7 to 10 days, or if there is a fever or a bad headache, you should see your doctor.


It has been noted that 12.1 percent of adults surveyed in the United States (U.S.) had been diagnosed with sinusitis in the previous 12 months.


Fast facts on sinusitis


Here are some key points about sinusitis. More detail is in the main article.


  • People have four pairs of sinuses, hollow spaces behind the bones of the face.


  • Allergies, bacteria or a virus can cause inflammation of the sinuses, or sinusitis.


  • It usually goes away without treatment, but sometimes medical attention is needed.


  • Chronic sinusitis lasts more than 12 weeks.