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Has thick discharge from nose,shedding of mucosal lining. Is it a polyp?

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ENT Specialist
Practicing since : 2001
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My aunt has been having a thick grey discharge from her nostrils. It looks like shedding of mucosal lining or maybe a polyp. She does not have a headache nor is she tender in her face or forehead.
Posted Mon, 21 May 2012 in Ear, Nose and Throat Problems
Answered by Dr. Naveen Kumar 1 hour later

Thanks for the query

The thick greyish discharge from the nose could be due to various reasons such as vasomotor rhinitis, sinusitis, allergic fungal sinusitis, nasal polyps, excessive nasal secretions following viral infection, etc.

It is not necessary that all the individuals who have sinusitis should have tenderness of the sinuses. There can be excessive nasal secretions from the nasal mucosa or the sinuses without symptoms of headache or sinus tenderness. A fungal sinusitis in elderly might not show any symptoms unless it is very severe. It will require a thorough examination of the nasal cavity and paranasal sinuses for making a conclusion.

Sometimes, a sinister fleshy polyp, popping up from the middle of the nose can give an appearance of the greyish discharge or a mere collection of the mucus can be mistaken for the polyp or vice versa. A probe test or gentle suctioning can help in differentiating the former from the latter.

As a home remedy, she can do steam inhalation 2-3 times a day and use saline nasal spray for clearing of the secretions. If the symptoms do not improve in couple of days it is better to consult an apt ENT specialist.

Hope this answers your query; I will be available for the follow-up queries.

Dr. Naveen Kumar N.
ENT and Head & Neck Surgeon
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