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Blood in sinus drainage
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Blood in sinus drainage

I was diagnosed yesterday with a blocked left max sinus.  I was put on Augmentin XR.  Yesterday afternoon, a large amount of discolored mucus was draining down my throat, which I was able to cough out.  It had some blood in it.  Later at night, I lightly coughed some blood up (half clear/ half blood). Since then, no blood.  The Dr said my lungs sounded clear.  Do I need to worry?  I have nosebleeds almost eveytime I blow my nose, and I've been running a humidifier and using saline nose spray.
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It sounds like you are well on your way to recovering from a blocked maxillary sinus!

Sinusitis is an inflammation of the mucous membranes that line the sinus cavities.  Inflammation of the sinuses could be due to an allergy, an infection, or ongoing exposure to an irritant, such as pollution or smoke.  Symptoms can include a headache or pressure in the area of the sinuses, a stuffy nose, achy teeth, postnasal drip, cough, sore throat, nosebleeds, and discolored or bloody nasal drainage.  A CT scan of the sinuses is the best way to identify sinusitis.

The most common cause of sinusitis is an infection, especially when the mucus is green.  Sinus infections can be difficult to treat since they respond slowly.  When any of the openings that drain your sinuses are blocked it will take longer to clear a sinus infection.  If a viral infection is the cause it's a matter of time until the sinusitis clears on its own.  When a bacterial infection is the cause you may need to take an antibiotic for at least 3 weeks.

This inflammation can block sinus drainage, cause increased mucus production, and bleeding that may mix with the mucus.  As the sinus infection clears, this mucus may drain from the nose and sinuses down the back of the throat causing a postnasal drip that can be irritating to the throat.

Drinking plenty of water will help to thin the mucus so that it moves more easily.  As long as you are not on a fluid restriction you should be drinking 6 to 8 8-ounce glasses of non-caffeine non-alcoholic fluid daily.

While the saline nose spray that you are using will loosen, a nasal wash can remove mucus and germs from the nose and sinuses.  This can temporarily decrease the postnasal drip and help your sinuses to drain better.  Please read our Nasal Wash MedFact at http://www.nationaljewish.org/medfacts/nasal.html for more information about this technique.  Share this information with your doctor to see if you would benefit from this daily treatment.

If your symptoms continue, your doctor may recommend a prescription nasal steroid spray.  This can decrease mucus production and improve sinus drainage by decreasing the inflammation in the nose and sinuses.  To get the most help from a nasal steroid spray use it after doing a nasal wash.  A nasal steroid spray does not provide immediate relief of symptoms.  It may take several weeks of routine use to become effective.
7 Comments
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Avatar_n_tn
coughing blood is not always from the lungs, you are obviously have a reason for the blood which is nasal bleed. now the question why you are bleeding from your nose all the time, is it related to abnormal nasal vessels or is it related to thin blood from low platelets which is the cells that help forming a clot or is it related to abnormal coagulation of your system. the first thing you should do is not to ignore this as it may cause blood loss and secondary problems like iron deficiency, you should have Complete Blood Count test which is a blood test looking for platelets count in your case and white cell count, your couagulation should also be assessed by doing tests called PT and PTT. if all the test came back normal then ENT surgeon advice will be good idea to assess your nasal vessels and also your sinuses as it may be needs to be drained.

you need to worry about the blood comming from the lungs if you are smoker, older than 40-years, and have previous cancers, or your are having blood comming with the urine, or you are having skin rash, or history of asthma.

hope this will help you.
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Avatar_n_tn
I agree with Abdullah. However, I think the blood coming from your lungs is associated with post nasal drip. Emys obviously has a source of bleeding and has already noted he has seen bloody drainge in the back of his throat.

Let me add that the winter time is notorious for causing nose bleeds. Its not so much the plummeting temperatures that cause them, but the fact that the air is very dry. A dry environment can make the lining in your nose thinner and more vulnerable to minor irritations.

Some things to do that can lessen the occurance:

- Drinking more water.
- Using a salt-based nasal spray as frequently as necessary.
- Gently applying a small amount of petroleum jelly to the lining of your nose.
- Using a home humidifier.
- Avoiding regular use of aspirin and other anti-inflammatory medications. They diminish the blood's ability to clot.

Goodluck, hope this helps...

-Andy, RRT, CPFT

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Avatar_n_tn
I've been advised that we should only use WATER-BASED gels in or near our noses to avoid lipoid pneumonia and nasty complications.  They sell water-based gels at the pharmacy and drug store, such as a gel called "Ayr" or KY Jelly, and similar formulations that your pharmacist can help you find.  They are commonly used by folks who use supplemental O2, who are even more prone to have problems with dry nasal passages.

My docs have explicitly warned against using petroleum jelly or any similar oil-based products in or near my nose or nasal passages for the above reason.

Aloha,
Starion
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Avatar_n_tn
agree that mineral oil in any inhaled form can cause lipoid pneumonia and should be avoided. thanx for this comment
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Avatar_n_tn
Thanks! Everyone!  So far, I've been on the Augmentin 3 days and have not had any more blood! Thanks for your help!
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Avatar_n_tn
Thats true Starion. I figured it would be easier to list petrolium jelly than to explain what a water based lubricant was. I completely forgot about the risk of lung scarring and lipoid pneumonia.

Nice catch.

-Andy
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A related discussion, blood in my sinuses was started.
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A related discussion, bloody mucous was started.
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