Dr KH Lim ENT Clinic

Sinusitis Treatment

What is Sinusitis?

Sinusitis is an inflammation or infection of the sinuses.  Sinuses are air-filled spaces within our face and skull base.  There are 4 pairs of sinuses.  They function to lighten our skull, protect underlying structures, contribute to resonance in our voice and produce mucus to maintain the function of our nose.

Types of Sinusitis

Sinusitis may be acute or chronic.  Acute sinusitis are infections that last less than 12 weeks. Any infection beyond 12 weeks is reclassified as chronic.  Chronic sinusitis may be associated with or without nasal polyps.  


Sinusitis may also be named according to the type of sinuses involved ie maxillary, ethmoid, frontal or sphenoid sinusitis.

Causes of Sinusitis

The nose and sinuses are lined by glands that produce mucus to maintain its function. Mucus produce within the sinuses drain via narrow opening called ostia into the nose. When these drainage pathway are blocked, mucus is trapped within the sinuses.

What-Causes Sinusitis
Sinusitis-pus from sinuses flowing to nasopharynx

This mucus becomes a source of infection.  Most sinus infections are acute. Chronic sinusitis are sinus infections that persist beyond 12 weeks.  The aetiology is more complex. 


It is usually due to a combination of factors such as structural deformity ( e.g deviated nasal septum), nose allergy, nasal polyps, poor immunity, in addition to infections.

Signs and Symptoms of Sinusitis

Most sinusitis presents with nose or sinus congestion, coloured or blood stained nose discharge, pain and fever. Other symptoms include poor sense of smell, cough, eye pain and swelling, visual disturbances, headache and sometimes toothaches.  Occasionally, there may be ear discomfort and ear block sensation, especially in children.

How Does Singapore Sinus Specialist Diagnose Sinusitis?

Singapore Sinus Specialist Diagnosing Sinusitis
Nasoendoscope (nose scope)

A nose swab may be done to determine the causal organism. An allergy test, blood test and CT scan may be done to evaluate your sinus infection.

In Singapore, a sinus specialist is an ENT specialist who receives additional training in treating sinus disease.  He will take a thorough history pertaining to your sinus infection, including the past history of allergy, asthma, allergic rhinitis and all possible contributing causes.


He will ask about your previous treatment and their outcome.  It will be useful to provide your previous investigations and scans.


A fine nose scope (nasoendoscope) will be inserted into your nose for an in-depth assessment of the nasal cavity and sinuses. A nose swab may be done to determine the causal organism.  An allergy test, blood test and CT scan may be done to evaluate your sinus infection.

Sinusitis Treatment

Sinusitis is usually treated with a course of antibiotics.  Decongestants, antihistamine and nasal rinse to control the symptoms.  Steroids may be prescribed. Allergen avoidance and anti-allergy medications if nasal allergy is a contributing factor. 


Culture directed antibiotics is useful in complex, recalcitrant and recurring sinusitis.  Scan helps to determine the extent of disease and rule out anatomical causes.


Sinus surgery is needed to restore the function of the sinuses by improving the drainage and aeration of the sinuses.  It also helps to improve the control of persistent diseases. 


An ENT specialist who is experienced in the treatment of sinus disease will customise a treatment plan to treat the disease,  remove the precipitating factors, deliver a safe surgery and ensure a speedy recovery from sinusitis.

Nasal toilet to suck out the mucus / pus

Sinus Surgery in Singapore

What It Is & When Will Doctor Recommend It?

Sinus surgery is a surgery to improve the sinus drainage pathway to restore the function of the sinuses. The pathway is unblocked by removing thin bony partitions called ‘cells’.  It is done endoscopically using very fine and delicate scopes and instruments.  Trapped mucus, polyps and fungal elements are carefully removed without compromising the functions of the nose and sinuses.


Sinus surgery is recommended when the disease is not controlled by medication and other non surgical methods. It is also indicated to augment the control of diseases by improving the drainage pathways of the sinuses, improving the delivery of drugs into the sinuses and removing the source of infection such as fungal ball.

What to Expect During Sinus Surgery?

Sinus surgery is usually performed under general anaesthesia in the operating room.  It is done endoscopically through the nostril without leaving any scars on the face.   


Post surgery, the nose will feel stuffy with some blood stained discharge from the nose.  You should be able to eat and drink on the same day of surgery.  There will be minimal pain.

Is Sinus Surgery Safe?

Sinus surgery used to be labelled as one of the most dangerous surgeries more than a century ago.  Nowadays sinus surgery is very safe, especially when it is performed by an experienced rhinologist i.e. an ENT specialist who received additional training in the management of sinus disease and endoscopic sinus surgery.  The risk to the eye, skull base and bleeding is reduced further with the use of image guidance system, high definition TV system and delicate surgical instruments. Major complications are extremely rare now under expert hands.

Sinus Surgery Singapore

Possible Risk, Complications & Side Effects

The risk of sinus surgery is very low nowadays.  Most complications are minor such as minor bleeding, nasal/sinus congestion, blood stained discharge. There may be ear block and reduced sense of smell in some patients after the surgery.  These symptoms are temporary.  


Major risks include injury to the eye, skull base, brain or major bleeding. These risks are very low under expert hands.


Depending on the nature of disease, there may be a small risk of recurrence.  Sense of smell may be affected if the disease is near the roof of the nose, where the olfactory nerves are situated.

Post-Surgery Recovery Tips

Post surgery, ample rest and hydration is recommended. Surgery is only part of the treatment.  Patients have to follow the post op treatment regime prescribed to optimise the control of disease to ensure a speedy recovery.  Regular post op care helps to clean the wounds and reduce any post op discomfort. Avoid strenuous activities in the initial weeks to reduce the risk of post op bleeding.

How to Select the Best Sinus Surgeon in Singapore?

When searching for the best sinus specialist in Singapore to receive comprehensive care, take time to assess each potential option before deciding. To ensure you choose the right surgeon for a successful sinus surgery, consider these factors:

Make sure that you select a qualified doctor who is certified by the Ministry of Health in Singapore and has completed academic training in Otolaryngology from a recognized university.

Choose an ENT specialist who has extensive experience in performing sinus surgery, such as endoscopic sinus surgery (ESS), balloon sinuplasty, or septoplasty. It is important to select a doctor who understands your individual needs and can provide the most effective treatment plan for you.

Check to see if your ENT specialist has access to the latest devices and technology, such as high definition cameras and advanced endoscopic equipment, which can be used in sinus surgeries. This ensures that you can get the best possible care with minimal risks and discomfort.

Look for ear, nose, and throat specialists who are highly skilled in their field and have a strong commitment to providing personalized care with the highest level of professionalism.

Before selecting a sinus surgeon, be sure to read their patient testimonials from others who have received treatment from them. Hearing how satisfied other patients were with the quality of care they received is a great way to gauge the standard of service you can expect.

Why Choose Dr KH Lim ENT Clinic

Our clinic is a practice that is built upon decades of mutual trust and sincerity with our patients. We cherish close partnership in treatment with our patients to achieve desirable outcomes. All treatment are customised after hearing our patient’s concern and expectation.  

Sinus Doctor in Singapore - Dr Lim Keng Hua

In additional, our practice is anchored by Dr Lim Keng Hua, an experienced ENT surgeon who had additional training in the management of complex sinus disease and nose allergy.  His added expertise is in the area of difficult sinus and skull base surgery. 


Lastly, our ethos is sincerity, patient focus and integrity. The well-being of our patients is our purpose. Sincerity is the best prescription we offer, and integrity is our core value. Hence, you can be assured to receive a high standard of care and speedy recovery.


In some cases, sinusitis can heal on its own without treatment. However, if the infection is more severe and persists for longer periods of time, it may require medical intervention such as antibiotics or drainage procedures to get rid of the infection and reduce symptoms. If you are experiencing any pain or discomfort in your sinuses, it is important to consult your doctor right away for further assessment and treatment.

Other signs and symptoms such as fatigue, facial pain, foul smell, toothaches, headaches, chronic cough and sore throat.  Rarely, there may be eye swelling, double or blurred vision, and disorientation, which suggest complications relating to undiagnosed sinusitis.  Talk to your doctor if you are concerned that you might have sinusitis for accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment options.

Yes, sinus can be a very serious problem if left untreated. Sinus infections can become chronic and spread to other parts of the body, leading to complications such as meningitis, septicemia and blindness.

In addition to causing severe pain, sinus infections can also cause dizziness and headaches due to pressure in the infected area. If you experience persistent symptoms such as facial pain or headache along with cold-like symptoms for more than 10 days, it is important that you seek medical advice from your doctor as soon as possible.

You can treat your sinus infection without surgery by using antibiotics, decongestants, and other medications. You may also need to take steps to prevent recurring sinusitis, such as avoiding allergens and other irritants, keeping your nasal passages hydrated, and taking medications as prescribed. Additionally, lifestyle changes like improving your diet or exercising more may help reduce inflammation in the body and improve symptoms.

The cost of sinus surgery in Singapore depends on the type of procedure performed and the individual’s overall health. 

Generally, insurance plans covering hospitalization should cover costs related to surgical procedures, but it is important to check with your insurance provider to see if they cover specific types of treatments. 

As some procedures may require specialist referral or treatment at a private clinic, additional costs such as consultation fees may apply.

You can know if a sinus infection is serious by looking for signs and symptoms such as persistent pain or headache, facial tenderness, fever, the feeling of pressure in the head or face, thick nasal discharge with bad smell, difficulty breathing through your nose, and fatigue.

If left untreated, sinus infections can spread to other parts of the body and lead to complications such as meningitis, septicemia or blindness. If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms it’s important that you seek medical advice from your doctor right away. 

Your doctor may suggest an imaging test or other diagnostic tests to determine the severity of your condition before recommending a specific treatment plan.

It depends on the type of sinus infection and treatment. Some bacterial sinus infections can last for 8-10 days with treatment, while more severe or chronic cases may need longer courses of medication (up to 4 weeks).

Allergic fungal sinusitis may require up to 6 months of therapy to fully resolve. If symptoms persist beyond 10 days or worsen, it is important to see a doctor as soon as possible for assessment and appropriate medical care.

An ENT specialist can diagnose sinusitis through a physical examination and imaging tests, then help choose the best treatment option. Depending on the cause, they may prescribe medications such as antibiotics or steroids to reduce inflammation in the sinuses, or suggest treatments such as surgery to open blocked passages. 

They can also provide advice on preventive measures like avoiding allergens or irritants that could be contributing to your condition. Ultimately, their goal is to alleviate symptoms and promote a speedy recovery.

Permanent cure is possible if the cause is completely removed or treated.  Most acute sinusitis can be cured.  However, chronic sinusitis are harder to manage.  A permanent cure is harder but symptoms can be controlled with minimal or no symptoms.  The key to treating it effectively and reducing the risk of recurrence lies in taking preventive measures and proper medications as prescribed by your doctor. Preventive steps include avoiding exposure to irritants such as smoke, dust, chemicals, and certain airborne allergens; drinking plenty of fluids to help thin mucus; cleaning your nose with a saline solution; and using a humidifier or steam inhalation if needed. 

As for medications, many over-the-counter saline nasal sprays are available for temporary relief from symptoms but should not be used long-term without consulting a doctor. Depending on the severity of your condition, prescription antibiotics or steroids may also be necessary to reduce inflammation in the sinuses. Surgery may be an option in some cases too. Talk to our ENT sinus specialist about what treatment plan would work best for you according to your individual condition.

Most patients start to feel relief from symptoms within days or weeks of having surgery and the full recovery time is usually between 8 to 12 weeks. 

However, most patients after a sinus procedure are able to return to their normal daily routine in 1-2 weeks.

It is important to visit an ENT specialist regularly after sinus surgery in order to clean the wound within the nose and sinuses.  The doctor will also check for any complications. Generally, it is recommended that patients visit their doctor at least four times within the first year post-surgery. 

During these visits, your doctor will assess the progress of healing and check for infections or other adverse reactions.

It is important to sleep with your head elevated to help reduce swelling in the face and sinus area after sinus surgery. 

Additionally, make sure not to sleep on your stomach as this can put more pressure on the operated area.

It is best to eat light, easy-to-digest foods like soups, smoothies, and broths to help your body heal more quickly after sinus surgery. Foods that are rich in protein and antioxidants like eggs, nuts, and fish can also help reduce swelling as well as aid in tissue regeneration. Avoiding salty/spicy food for a few days after the procedure will also be beneficial for reducing inflammation. Additionally, it is important to drink plenty of fluids such as water or juice to stay hydrated and promote healing.

Have a question? Call us today

When it comes to sinus infection, our ENT specialist clinic is your best choice for effective sinusitis treatment in Singapore. Utilizing the latest equipment and technologies, we are able to provide accurate diagnoses and offers you a personalized treatment tailored to your needs.

Don’t wait any longer to get the help you need – contact us today! We look forward to helping you on your journey toward recovery.

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