WHAT IS NASAL POLYPS ?
Nasal polyps are fleshy swellings, or polypoidal masses that develop in the lining of the nose and paranasal sinuses (air-filled spaces, communicating with the nasal cavity, within the bones of the skull and face). They are non-cancerous growths.
Polyps vary in size; they may be yellowish brown or pink and are shaped like teardrops. As they grow they eventually look like grapes on a stem.
Polyps usually grow in both nostrils; they can also grow on their own or in clusters. Polyps in just one side of the nose are not common.
Large polyps and/or clusters can cause breathing difficulties. They can affect the patient’s sense of smell. They may block the sinuses and cause frequent infections and other problems.
Symptoms Of Nasal Polyps :
- Runny nose – this may be permanent, with the patient feeling as if he/she always has a cold.
- Persistent stuffy or blocked nose – in some cases the patient may find it hard to breathe through the nose. There may be sleeping problems.
- Postnasal drip – a feeling of mucus continually running down the back of the throat.
- Either no sense of smell or poor sense of smell – this may not improve after polyps are treated
- Poor sense of taste – this may not improve after polyps are treated.
- Pain in the face
- Itchiness around the eyes
- Obstructive sleep apnea – in severe cases. This is a potentially serious condition; the patient stops breathing during sleep.
- Double vision – in severe cases. More likely to occur if the patient has allergic fungal sinusitis or cystic fibrosis.