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Home > Patients & Visitors > Health Library > Needle Puncture and Aspiration of Sinus Contents for Sinusitis
For this test, the sinus cavity is punctured with a needle, and a
sample of the sinus contents is obtained. A
culture and sensitivity test is often done on the
sample to identify the
fungus causing the infection and to determine which
medicine will be most effective in treating it. Cells taken from the sample
may be studied under a microscope. The sinus cavity is then usually flushed
with saline solution.
Needle puncture and aspiration of the sinus may be needed when a
person has repeated sinus infections. More accurate information about which
organism is causing the infection may help the doctor and you make
better treatment decisions.
The organism causing the infection can be identified. Other tests
can determine which antibiotic will be most effective in treating the
This procedure is considered necessary only when standard
antibiotics have not worked.
It is usually done by an ear, nose, and throat doctor
The procedure is somewhat uncomfortable, and in rare cases it can cause
the infection to spread. Children and some adults may require medicine to
keep them calm and relieve pain.
General anesthesia may be needed in some cases.
Complete the medical test information form (PDF)(What is a PDF document?) to help you prepare for this test.
September 12, 2012
Patrice Burgess, MD - Family Medicine & Donald R. Mintz, MD - Otolaryngology
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