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The use of steroids in sinus, throat and ear disease

August 20, 2019

 

 

At Hudson ENT, we take great care in getting a history before making a diagnosis. In other words, what you have been through to get you to need to see us (your ear, nose throat specialists) makes a great difference in what the diagnosis might be and how to treat you!

Oftentimes, people who see us have already been seen by a primary care provider or an urgent care center. Many times, people have had antibiotics which are often appropriate, but unfortunately giving more antibiotics might not be the answer. 

Otolaryngologists use oral steroids to their advantage often. Some people have great reservations about using these medicines because of hearing stories or perhaps personal experience. Sometimes, patients are anxious before taking these medicines called steroids because of not having all the correct information. 

Indeed these medicines carry risk. For healthy patients who haven't had them before, the risk is self-limited and usually reserved to feelings like heightened anxiety, insomnia, upset stomach and the like. However, the medicines tend to be very effective and help many ear nose and throat problems because many of the problems that we see are chronic & inflammatory.

All providers at Hudson ENT are well-trained shared-decision-makers, meaning that we spell out the risks and alternatives as well as the benefits. See our homepage for our mission statement at www.hudsonent.com/

Common diseases that would benefit from short steroid use include sinusitis and Allergy flare-up mastoiditis in middle ear fluid and even some swollen throat Sensations.

Now, there is a hierarchy of such medicines - -  from the non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen, on to the lighter medicines such as the Medrol dose pack, but oftentimes prednisone, which is arguably "the gold standard oral steroid", for a week or two are used to help the problem to the point of complete and permanent resolution.

Now, we can not overemphasize that a careful history needs to be had and that's the time that we spent with you here. If you have a history of gastrointestinal psychiatric or autoimmune conditions this type of medicine and treatment might not be free. A full and complete list of possible side effects are beyond the scope of this blog, but are really available to you upon request. We will elaborate on them at your visit. 

Would you like to have personal attention to your ear, nose and throat problems? Give Hudson ENT a call today at 845-758-1456. 

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