How should nasal cultures be obtained for acute sinusitis (sinus infection)?

Updated: Mar 01, 2018
  • Author: Itzhak Brook, MD, MSc; Chief Editor: Michael Stuart Bronze, MD  more...
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Answer

Aspiration of the sinus by direct antral puncture is the only accurate way to obtain a culture; however, this is reserved for those with life-threatening illness or an immunocompromised status or those who have disease that is unresponsive to therapy. However, in adults, if attainable, cultures directed at the middle meatus more accurately reflect the contents of the sinuses themselves, according to most studies. This may not be useful in children because the meatus is usually colonized. [35]


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