The symptoms of chronic sinusitis include headache, of a constant or recurrent type, postnasal discharge, sinus pain, vertigo, photophobia, tenderness and sometimes swelling over the involved sinus. Pain may be localized to the supraorbital region in frontal sinusitis and the upper teeth or cheek in maxillary sinusitis. Sphenoid or ethmoid involvement commonly causes pain in the occipital and parietal regions of the head, behind the nose and eyes, or in the neck. Serous, mucoid or purulent discharges may be noted on the turbinates or near the ostia of the involved sinuses.
Treatment with nose drops may promote drainage but should be avoided because it may damage the mucosa and extend the infection. Antihistamine drugs remove normal moisture from the mucous membranes and thereby increase the chances of infection. Most of them cause drowsiness and make driving dangerous. Those containing ephedrine cause nervousness, insomnia and palpitation of the heart.
Chronic sinusitis is often caused or aggravated by allergies. Acupuncture can relieve allergies along with the symptoms of sinusitis. Acute sinusitis should be treated with antibiotics rather than with acupuncture, but acupuncture may be used to give almost immediate relief from nasal congestion.
Allergies, depression and insomnia can also be treated with acupuncture if these problems seem to be complicating the sinusitis. Electropotentiation and heat may be helpful and reduce the number of treatments needed for lasting relief. Even if the symptoms are relieved after the first or second treatment, at least six treatments should be given. Some cases of long-standing sinusitis involving headaches and allergies may require ten or more treatments.
1. Body acupuncture
Modification: For sthenia syndrome, Taiyang (EX-HN 5 ) is added; if there is heat in the lung meridian, Dazhui (GV 14) and Lieque (LU 7) are added; if there is stagnant heat in the gallbladder meridian, Fengchi (GB 20) and Xingjian (LR 2) are added; if there is stagnant heat in the spleen meridian, Zusanli (ST 36) and Yin-lingquan (SP 9) are added. For asthenia syndrome, Zu-sanli (ST 36) is added; if there is asthenia-cold in pulmo-nary qi, Feishu (BL 13) and Taiyuan (LU 9) are added; if spleen qi is asthenic, Pishu (BL 20) and Weishu (BL 21) are added.
Performance: For sthenia syndrome, reducing nee-dling technique is used without moxibustion; Yingxiang (LI 20) is needled obliquely toward the inner region;
Yintang (EX-HN 3 ) is needled horizontally downward with rotating technique for reducing purpose; Taiyang (EX-HN 5) is pricked for bloodletting. For asthenia syn-drome, Yingxiang (LI 20) and Yintang (EX-HN 3) are needled with mild reinforcing and reducing techniques, the rest of the acupoints are needled with reinforcing technique with needle-warming moxibustion or with moxa-roll moxibustion.
2. Ear acupuncture
Performance: Each time 3 - 4 acupoints are needled with medium stimulation. The needles are retained for 30 minutes. Or 2 - 3 acupoints are selected for embedment of needles. Or Wangbuliuxingzi (Semen Vaccariae) is used for auricular acupressure alternatively on both ears 3 – 4 times a day.