Sinus infections usually come and go without too much complication. They might make us achy and uncomfortable, and take us away from work for a few days, but they are generally a passing annoyance.
However in rare cases, sinus infections can escalate into serious conditions.
Earlier this summer, a University of Kansas freshman died of meningitis. The original problem? An aggressive sinus infection that spiraled out of control and eventually spread to her brain.
In other rare instances, untreated sinusitis can lead to problems like sepsis, which is also known as blood poisoning. With sepsis, the body’s defense mechanisms go into overdrive, and vital organs can be fatally damaged.
There are no concrete rules about when and why a sinus infection might escalate. Those with a weakened immune system and people in intensive care may be more at risk than the average person.
Sinusitis Warning Signs
Warning signs of sinusitis complications may include:
- Fever above 100.5°F
- Intense pain around the eyes, ears, throat or head
- Swelling around the forehead or eyes
When you notice sinus-infection symptoms, check in with your doctor to get personalized treatment advice. Severe complications are rare, but even in regular cases, the sooner you can get treatment, the sooner you can feel like your healthy self again.
If you have any questions about treating your sinus infection, our expert team is here to help.