5 Types of Fungal Sinusitis and Easy Treatments for Them

cured fungal sinusitis types


Fungal sinusitis is a rare form of chronic sinusitis caused by fungus in the mucous membranes of the nose. It can result from an imbalance in the natural flora of your nasal cavity or an attempt to treat another condition with antibiotics, which can destroy healthy bacteria and leave openings for fungi to grow. If left untreated, it can lead to complications like facial palsy, meningitis, or even brain abscess. But if it’s caught early enough, you can manage fungal sinusitis with home remedies and simple medical treatments. Here are several types of fungal sinusitis and how to treat them.


What is a Sinus?

A sinus is a cavity in any of the bones in your face. They are air-filled spaces that form a pathway between your nasal cavity and your paranasal sinuses. These are found behind your cheekbones, eyes, and above your eyebrows. In childhood, they become blocked with mucous, which may result in sinusitis, which can be prevented by early treatment

Some people are more prone to developing sinus disease than others. Factors that may contribute to this include narrowed passages due to inflammation or structural abnormalities, previous infections, environmental allergies, and a weakened immune system. Sinusitis is any inflammation or infection of the paranasal sinuses. It is triggered by a bacterial or viral infection and may lead to the formation of pus in the sinuses, which causes pain, swelling, and difficulty in breathing. Typically, it will last for at least two weeks or until the infection has been treated.


What is fungal sinusitis?

Fungal sinusitis is a rare form of chronic sinusitis, or an inflammation of the sinuses, caused by fungus in the mucous membranes of the nose. While fungal infections are very common, they usually occur in people with compromised immune systems, like those with HIV, cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy, organ transplant patients, and people on long-term antibiotics. 

But fungal sinusitis is rare. In fact, it affects 1 in 100,000 people per year. The fungus can grow in the mucous membranes of your nose and cause an infection. In rare cases, it can also extend into the bones surrounding your sinuses and lead to facial swelling and pain. This can cause you to have a stuffy or runny nose, coughing, headaches, and difficulty sleeping. You may also notice a foul smell coming from your nose.


1. Fungal rhinosinusitis

Fungal rhinosinusitis (FR) is rare and occurs when a fungus infects your sinuses. Typically, your immune system will keep the fungus at bay, but people with weakened immune systems can’t fight off the infection. This can happen when you take antibiotics for a long period of time, which can destroy the healthy bacteria in your body that fights the fungus

People who have received a bone marrow transplant and people with HIV/AIDS have a higher risk of developing FR. Symptoms of FR include a change in your sense of smell or taste, facial pain, a headache, difficulty breathing through your nose, pus or blood draining from your nose, and swelling of the nose or around your eyes.


2. Aspergilloma

Aspergilloma is the swelling of fungal spores in the mucous membranes of your sinuses. This is most commonly found in people who receive a long-term course of antibiotics for cystic fibrosis, COPD, or another lung disease. People with aspergilloma may experience headaches, facial pain, nasal congestion, a foul smell, and vision changes. You may also experience pain in your teeth, ears, and/or around your jaw joint.


3. Chronic fungal sinusitis

Chronic fungal sinusitis (CFS) is when a fungus infects your sinuses for more than 12 weeks. In most cases, it’s caused by an overgrowth of bacteria in your gut. This bacteria can travel up to your sinuses, open up a hole in your sinuses and allow the fungus to grow in it. Bacterial resistance to antibiotics is also a cause of CFS. You may experience a change in your sense of smell or taste, facial pain, a headache, pus or blood draining from your nose, a stuffy or runny nose, sleeping difficulties and swelling around your eyes, or a change in your appearance.


4. Fungal infection after antibiotic use

Fungal infection after antibiotic use is a side effect of taking antibiotics. It can result in fungal infections in the sinuses, lungs, or ears. The infection may be mild, but it can become severe if left untreated. Symptoms include a change in your sense of smell or taste, coughing (especially at night), facial pain, a headache, nasal congestion, pain in your teeth and/or around your jaw joint, sleeping difficulties, and a stuffy or runny nose.


5. Superficial fungal rhinosinusitis and eosinophilic fungal sinusitis 

They are rare types of fungal sinusitis that affect the skin inside your nose. These types of fungal sinusitis are more common in people with weakened immune systems. Symptoms include a change in your sense of smell, a change in your sense of taste, coughing, a flu-like feeling, facial pain, headache, nasal congestion, pain in your teeth and/or around your jaw joint, pus or blood draining from your nose, and sleeping difficulties.


Five Easy Ways to Treat Fungal Sinusitis

  1. Use a Neti Pot: Nasal irrigation is a natural and safe way to help relieve sinus congestion and remove excess mucus. This can be done at home and is recommended if you have a fungal sinus infection. 
  2. Adjust Your Diet: You should avoid certain types of food if you have a fungal sinus infection, such as dairy and wheat products. You should also consider eating more whole grains, such as oats, barley, and quinoa. 
  3. Avoid Smoking and Other Toxic Substances: Smoking and consuming alcohol have been linked to fungal sinusitis. You should also try to reduce your exposure to other types of pollutants to limit your risk of contracting a fungal infection.
  4. Use a Humidifier: For some time, you may also want to use a humidifier to help clear any mucus from your nasal passage and sinuses. 
  5. Go Green: You may also want to consider growing some indoor plants, such as spider plants, philodendrons, or aloe vera, which have been shown to reduce indoor pollution and may help reduce the severity of your condition.


When to See an Ear, Nose, and Throat doctor

If you’re suffering from chronic sinusitis, you should consult an ENT doctor to assess your condition and recommend the appropriate treatment. Although available over-the-counter, many sinusitis medications are not very effective, especially if you have a fungal sinus infection. If you are diagnosed with fungal sinusitis, you will be prescribed an antifungal medication, which may come in the form of a pill or liquid. You may need to take these for several weeks or months, depending on the severity of your condition.



Fungal sinusitis is an uncommon complication of chronic rhinosinusitis (inflammation of the sinuses) that typically occurs in patients with prolonged or untreated cases of this condition. Fungal sinusitis may appear as a complication after endoscopic sinus surgery, especially when fungi are present in the diseased mucosal lining of the nose and paranasal cavities. It can also be a result of immunosuppression from other diseases or medication.

Fungal infection can also develop because of a pre-existing nasal fungus, such as "Fusarium" in the case of fumitory yellow spot disease, which is transmitted by insects like thrips and aphids. The best way to avoid getting fungal sinusitis is to treat your red, swollen, and painful nose quickly; if it's not treated fast enough, it may lead to infection. Visit for more tips and treatments to help you with your health and wellness. 

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