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What causes green colored nasal discharge?

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Posted on Thu, 31 Jul 2014
Question: I blew my nose this morning and a squarish, light greenish (kinda like honeydew melon) about 2.5 mm x 2.5mm came out. What the heck is it? I'm 60 and haven't seen anything like it before
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Answered by Dr. Michelle Gibson James (49 minutes later)
Brief Answer:
green discharge may occur in allergies or infectio

Detailed Answer:
HI, thanks for using healthcare magic

This would be discharge from the sinus passages.

Discharge may be formed due to viral or bacterial infection or allergies.

The discharge can take on a green appearance as a result on interaction between the mucus and the different chemicals involved in the immune response specifically lymphocytes, neutrophils or eosinphils (if more of an allergy).
These are different types of white blood cells. White blood cells are responsible for the body's immune response to infection or inflammation.

Summary: (1)mucous discharge that would have altered appearance due to immune response
(2) it is may be an indicator of allergies or infection (viral or bacterial) but not if any other significant condition

I hope this helps, feel free to ask any other questions
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Follow up: Dr. Michelle Gibson James (1 hour later)
I'm 60 and have had typical greenish discharge before and knew it was a possible bacterial sinus infection. This was an atypical squarish chunk. It looked like a small defined block of honeydew melon. Very weird so I was just curious to find out if physicians have seen this before and what it could be
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Answered by Dr. Michelle Gibson James (41 minutes later)
Brief Answer:
yes can occur

Detailed Answer:
HI

Yes, this type of discharge has been seen before though the exact colour may vary from one person to the next.
If you have sinus symptoms then it is a possible infection. As mentioned can occur with allergies or infection (viral or bacterial).

The shape would reflect hardening and molding of the mucus discharge that would have occurred.

Please feel free to ask any thing else
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Answered by
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Dr. Michelle Gibson James

General & Family Physician

Practicing since :2001

Answered : 16811 Questions

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What causes green colored nasal discharge?

Brief Answer: green discharge may occur in allergies or infectio Detailed Answer: HI, thanks for using healthcare magic This would be discharge from the sinus passages. Discharge may be formed due to viral or bacterial infection or allergies. The discharge can take on a green appearance as a result on interaction between the mucus and the different chemicals involved in the immune response specifically lymphocytes, neutrophils or eosinphils (if more of an allergy). These are different types of white blood cells. White blood cells are responsible for the body's immune response to infection or inflammation. Summary: (1)mucous discharge that would have altered appearance due to immune response (2) it is may be an indicator of allergies or infection (viral or bacterial) but not if any other significant condition I hope this helps, feel free to ask any other questions