Nasal Polyps


Nasal polyps are benign growths or tumors that grow from the membranes of the sinuses or nose. It is theorized that polyps are caused by infection. It appears that under the polyp is infected bone. It is unclear whether the polyp stems from an original infection in the bone or the polyp infects the underlying bone. I believe that the infection starts in the membrane and spreads to the bone, causing a vicious cycle between the bone and the overlying tissue. The inflammation caused by the infection in the mucus and the bone causes the tissues of the nasal membranes to swell and welt. This swelling is called polypoid change. As the inflammation and swelling worsens, a polyp forms. When there are many polyps, the tissue looks like a bunch of grapes.

The only way to truly know that you have nasal polyps is from an examination of the membranes. However, most physicians are not able to tell the difference between polyps and swollen turbinates. It is best to go to an otolaryngologist, who will not only examine you directly but may order a computed tomography (CT) scan.

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