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Found yellow liquid flow out of my nostril. Do I need to see a doctor?

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ENT Specialist
Practicing since : 1991
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I just had a yellow liquid maybe a tablespoon pour out of my left nostril when I bent over slightly. It smelled. Then I put a tissue in my nostril for 30 seconds and it was completely soaked and smelled. It's only coming out of my left side. Do I need to see a doctor? Any idea of the cause? I am not, nor have I been sick at all recently.
Posted Sun, 18 Aug 2013 in Ear, Nose and Throat Problems
Answered by Dr. Sumit Bhatti 1 hour later

Thank you for your query.

1. A one sided yellow foul smelling liquid draining from the nose after bending slightly will signify either an inflammation or infection in the left side of the nose or the sinuses.

2. If possible, get the fluid examined by sending a sample or swab in a sterile container to a lab for culture and antibiotic sensitivity.

3. Gat a nasal examination and a video nasal endoscopy done. This is because there are other causes such as a nasal obstruction, polyp, growth, foreign body, fungal infections and so on which must be excluded.

4. You may request your doctor to start treatment with a broad spectrum antibiotic, an anti-allergic decongestant, mucolytic and regular steam inhalation.

5. If there is no response in a few days, get a plain CT PNS (Para Nasal Sinuses) with 1 mm coronal, axial and sagittal cuts done on a multi-slice CT Scan Machine. This will help in ruling out any sinusitis and establishing the cause.

6. You may upload the scan images, endoscopy video or image captures and culture reports for an accurate assessment.

I hope that I have answered your queries. If you have any further questions, I will be available to answer them.

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