Stuffy Nose and Rhinorrhea

Ear Nose | Otorhinolaryngology | Stuffy Nose and Rhinorrhea (Symptom)


Rhinorrhea is a condition where the nasal cavity is filled with a significant amount of mucous fluid. The condition, commonly known as runny nose, occurs relatively frequently and is not usually considered dangerous. Rhinorrhea is a common symptom of allergies or certain diseases, such as the common cold or hay fever. It can be a side effect of crying, exposure to cold temperatures, or withdrawal, such as from opioids like methadone.


If secretions are in larger quantities and are also infected, they may obstruct eustachian tuba (or canal, that connects the throat and inner ear), causing local pain and otitis. Leaks can block sinuses, causing also the pain and infection area. The infections which can cause rhinorrhea are varied, but most patients should not be alarmed by them. The most common cause is allergic rhinorrhea (dust, pollen or other substances with potential allergen that come in contact with nasal mucosa).

Other common causes of nasal discharge: Viral or bacterial infections: colds, flu, and sinusitis. Discontinuing use nasal decongestants (there is a rebound phenomenon congestive) - the situation is called, specialized in medical terms drug rhinitis. Most commonly, its appearance is caused by drugs such as ephedrine, xylometazoline, but also cocaine.

Rare causes are: nasal polyps (which appears as a result of allergies and chronic inflammation). Leaks of CSF (usually occur after cranio-cerebral trauma involving violent break meninges, CSF leakage situation that allows for nose). Vasomotor rhinitis (non-allergenic and non-infectioasa disease).

There are a number of environmental factors that may cause transient rhinitis, such as contact with vegetables such as onions, garlic, paprika, pepper. In children, rhinorrhea can be determined by the presence of foreign bodies in the nose is called sinusitis).

Diagnosis and Treatment

Laboratory investigations may include: Radiographs of the skull, emphasizing the best possible sinus; CT of the cephalic end (especially for achieving differential diagnosis and excluding other causes of rhinorrhea); Bacterial cultures to make runny nose sensitivity.

Treatment for rhinorrhea is not usually necessary, but there are a number of medical treatments and preventative techniques available.