Nasal endoscopy in asthmatic children: assessment of rhinosinusitis and adenoiditis incidence, correlations with cytology and microbiology


Giorgio Ciprandi MD, DI. M. I., Allergy & Respiratory Diseases, Padiglione Maragliano (piano terra), Ospedale San Martino, Largo R. Benzi 10, 16132 Genoa, Italy. E-mail:


Background Upper respiratory airway diseases may induce a worsening of asthma. Sinusitis represents one of the most common chronic diseases. The association of asthma and sinusitis varies greatly in different studies, depending on diagnostic procedures.

Objective The aims were: (i) to demonstrate that nasal endoscopy may be easily feasible in asthma at paediatric age; (ii) to evaluate the incidence of rhinosinusitis and adenoiditis in children with asthma by nasal endoscopy; (iii) to correlate inflammatory parameters such as cytology and microbiological cultures with nasal endoscopy findings.

Subjects and methods One hundred and forty-five asthmatic children were evaluated, 48 males and 97 females, with an average age of 7.27 years. Evaluated parameters were the incidence of rhinosinusal infections in asthmatic children, and the role of: (i) nasal endoscopy, (ii) nasal cytology, and (iii) nasal microbiology in their diagnoses.

Results Nasal endoscopy was successfully performed on 128 patients. Twenty-six children had endoscopic rhinosinusitis alone, 10 had adenoiditis alone, and 35 showed endoscopic rhinosinusitis associated with adenoiditis. There were significant correlations between endoscopic rhinosinusitis and adenoiditis (P < 0.001), between clinical and endoscopic rhinosinusitis (P < 0.001), between endoscopic rhinosinusitis and adenoiditis and microbiology (P < 0.05 and P < 0.0001, respectively), and between microbiology and cytology (P < 0.05).

Conclusion This study shows that rhinosinusal infections are common in asthmatic children. Moreover, nasal endoscopy might represent a fruitful tool in the management of asthmatic children.