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AAO-HNSF: Honey Beats Antibiotics for Chronic Sinusitis

Chronic rhinosinusitis associated with significant bodily pain that improves following surgery

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 24 (HealthDay News) -- Honey is an effective bactericidal agent against common causes of chronic rhinosinusitis, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Staphylococcus aureus (SA), and chronic rhinosinusitis leads to increases in bodily pain that improve following endoscopic sinus surgery, according to two research studies presented at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery Foundation held Sept. 21 to 24 in Chicago.

In the first study, Talal Alandejani, M.D., of the University of Ottawa in Canada, and colleagues utilized a biofilm model to evaluate the antibacterial activity of Manuka honey from New Zealand and Sidr honey from Yemen against methicillin-susceptible SA (MSSA), methicillin-resistant SA (MRSA) and Pseudomonas aeruginosa isolates in both planktonic (broth) and biofilm-grown bacteria. In the broth, both honeys demonstrated 100 percent bactericidal activity against all isolates. Among the biofilm-grown bacteria, the bactericidal rate for the Sidr and Manuka honeys against MSSA, MRSA and Pseudomonas aeruginosa were 63, 73 and 91 percent, and 82, 63 and 91 percent, respectively. The bactericidal rates were significantly greater than rates seen with single antibiotics used for the treatment of MSSA, MRSA and Pseudomonas aeruginosa.

In the second study, Alexander C. Chester, M.D., of Georgetown University Medical Center in Washington, D.C., and colleagues performed a systematic review to determine if bodily pain scores measured by the Short Form Health Survey (SF-36) are elevated in patients with chronic rhinosinusitis and if SF-36 bodily pain scores significantly decline following endoscopic sinus surgery. In 10 observational endoscopic sinus surgery studies with 909 patients, SF-36 bodily pain scores demonstrated increased preoperative pain compared to the general population mean pain scores. All studies demonstrated improvements in SF-36 bodily pain after surgery.

"We found that the daily experience of bodily pain was much more common in patients with sinusitis than in the overall population," Chester writes. "Having data showing that pain will improve after sinus surgery is particularly helpful when considering the merits of undergoing surgery when medications fail."

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