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Factors associated with computed tomography status in patients presenting with a history of chronic rhinosinusitis

Authors

  • Leah J. Abrass BS,

    1. Department of Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery, Northwestern University, Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago, IL
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  • Rakesh K. Chandra MD,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery, Northwestern University, Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago, IL
    • Department of Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery, Northwestern University, Feinberg School of Medicine, 675 North Street Clair, Suite 15-200, Chicago, IL 60611
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  • David B. Conley MD,

    1. Department of Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery, Northwestern University, Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago, IL
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  • Bruce K. Tan MD,

    1. Department of Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery, Northwestern University, Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago, IL
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  • Robert C. Kern MD

    1. Department of Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery, Northwestern University, Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago, IL
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  • Presented at the American Rhinologic Society, Annual Scientific Meeting, September 25, 2010, Boston, MA.

    Potential conflict of interest: None provided.

Abstract

Background

The diagnosis of chronic rhinosinusitis (CRS) is based upon symptomatic criteria and objective measures. However, patients suspected to have CRS based on a positive history but negative endoscopies remain a diagnostic challenge. We investigated the utility of point of care computed tomography (POC-CT) in resolving this issue.

Methods

The study group consisted of a simple random sample of 100 patients presenting with active CRS symptoms and negative endoscopies who underwent POC-CT at initial presentation. Presenting symptoms and comorbidities were correlated with CT scan results (positive/negative) using univariate and multivariate logistic regression models.

Results

POC-CT was considered positive in 49% of patients. Univariate analysis revealed that patients complaining nasal obstruction were significantly more likely to have a positive scan (odds ratio [OR], 2.74; p = 0.047), while those with postnasal drip (OR, 0.44; p = 0.047) or cough (OR, 0.17; p = 0.03) were less likely to have positive scan results. In the multivariate model, these trends persisted without reaching statistical significance. Under univariate analysis, patients who were prescribed antibiotics, oral steroids, or nasal steroids at this initial visit were more likely to have had a positive CT. These trends also persisted in the multivariate model, with significance observed for the association between antibiotic prescription and a positive scan (p = 0.001).

Conclusion

Less than 50% of patients with active CRS symptoms had radiographic manifestations of sinus disease. Other etiologies must be considered higher in the differential for those presenting primarily with complaints referable to the throat. POC-CT averted unnecessary antibiotics in these patients. © 2011 ARS-AAOA, LLC.

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