What is Rhinitis Allergy?

Sensitive Nose? Maybe you're suffering from Rhinitis!

Allergic rhinitis is an allergic disease caused by sensitinogen that reacts on the mucous membranes in the nasal cavity. There are two types which are perennial and seasonal allergic rhinitis. Perennial allergic rhinitis occurs throughout the year; 

Rhinitis Symptoms

Whereas seasonal allergic rhinitis usually occurs during the flowering season. In this season, plants start releasing their pollen for reproduction. Pollen is one of the sensitinogens of allergic rhinitis. The clinical features of allergic rhinitis are; Itchy nose, sneezing, runny nose, and blockage in the nose. About 20% of adults and children have seasonal or perennial allergic rhinitis [Otolaryngology. Although it is prevalent in most countries, regardless of tropical or seasonal, most conditions are not adequately treated and result in chronic allergic rhinitis.

The chronic illness of allergic rhinitis usually leads to more severe complications in the upper and lower airways, such as asthma, sinusitis, and otitis media. Otitis media is an inflammation of the middle ear. Fluid builds up in the middle ear and temporarily causes hearing loss. However, if this chronic disease is not treated correctly, it can lead to permanent hearing loss.

Some medical scientists conducted surveys to study the epidemiological relationship between allergic rhinitis and other airway diseases.

They found that 78% of asthma patients also had allergic rhinitis. They also found that 99% of adults and 93% of teens with allergic asthma also had allergic rhinitis. In addition, another study conducted over 23 years found that college students who had previously had allergic rhinitis were three times more likely to have asthma than students who had not previously had allergic rhinitis.

Many kinds of research and work have been done to study the epidemiological link between allergic rhinitis and sinusitis. The results were well documented. Earlier studies showed that 53% of children who had allergic rhinitis also had sinusitis. He proved this with abnormal sinus radiographs of children. Recent studies showed that up to 70% of children who had allergies and chronic rhinitis had abnormal sinus radiographs. In 78% of patients with recurrent sinus infections, allergic rhinitis was co-occurring with their extensive sinus disease. Of the children who had effusion with otitis media, 40 to 50% had allergic rhinitis. This was confirmed by a positive allergy skin test or increased serum IgE antibody to a specific allergy test.

Treatment of Rhinitis 

The scientist proposed a model for the development of sinusitis and otitis media. The proposed model assumes that the primary cause of sinusitis is not a bacterial infection but rather a blockage in the nasal cavity, which hinders the normal movement of air and secretions in and out of the sinuses. The virus that causes inflammation in the nose is an upper respiratory tract infection (URTI) type, called rhinovirus. The research was done to study the effect of this virus on diseases of the nose. The results showed that when a group of people inoculated with rhinovirus in their nasal passages, one-third of these people would develop sinus abnormalities and typical sinus disease symptoms. Another study also showed that 87% of healthy adults who voluntarily underwent a self-diagnosed cold had maxillary sinus disease.

The fluid inside the sinus cavity must normally drain to keep the nose healthy. When the nose is infected with bacteria or viruses or exposed to allergens, dust, or chemicals, thick secretions will develop and more likely block the narrowed sinus Ostia (the opening connecting to the sinus cavity). The accumulation of these secretions in the sinus cavity will lead to further blockage, mucosal inflammation, and thickening of the sinus mucosa. This will create an anaerobic environment that makes the bacteria's growth more favorable and gives rise to infection. Congested sinus Ostia must be resolved. If not, it will lead to recurrent acute and eventually chronic nasal disease. This model also explained why chronic sinusitis is resistant to antimicrobial treatment alone. To properly treat sinusitis, antihistamines and corticosteroids should be used in conjunction with antimicrobial therapy.

The scientist developed a similar model to explain the phenomenon of otitis media with effusion. 83% of children had at least one incident of acute otitis media by the age of 3 years. This model hypothesizes that nasal inflammation caused by allergies or the URTI virus will lead to further Eustachian tube inflammation and blockage. Blockage of the Eustachian tube will increase negative pressure in the central region, and without improper ventilation; Fluid will accumulate in the middle ear. The obstructed Eustachian tube sometimes opens with a current, and it sucks out internal nasal secretions, which contain bacteria, viruses, and allergens that enter the middle ear cavity. As a result, this intense bacterium otitis media will be the cause.

Conclusion -

From the above information gathered from various scientific publications, we know those common nasal allergies should not be left untreated. This is because it will lead to blockage, fluid accumulation, bacterial infection, and acute illness. If these diseases are not treated successfully or adequately, a chronic condition of inflammation, nasal congestion, and sinus infection will develop and can lead to mucosal damage and eventually chronic disease. If the disease spreads to the middle ear, it will cause permanent hearing loss.


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