Sinus infection in intensive care patients

E. Mevio, M. Benazzo, S. Quaglieri, S. Mencherini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Sinusitis is a complication known to accompany nasotracheal intubation, but its frequency has not been well established. During a two-year-period, 1,126 patients in an intensive care unit have been studied. Twenty-seven of them (2%) developed a bacterial sinusitis. The diagnosis is established on the basis of an unexplained clinical sepsis, imaging evidence of fluid in the maxillary sinus, and antral puncture. Microbiological samples showed Gram-negative micro-organisms, in particular Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and an elevated percentage of Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli. The likely predisposing factors (nasogastric and/or nasotracheal tubes) are discussed. Aetiology, diagnosis and management of the disease are discussed in detail. The importance of prompt removal of nasal instrumentation and of early sinus drainage, in addition to broad-spectrum antibiotic therapy, is emphasized.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)232-236
Number of pages5
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1996


  • intensive care
  • sinus drainage
  • sinusitis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology


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