Effectiveness of topical treatment for nasopharyngitis

Yoshihiro Ohno, Takanobu Kunihiro

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1 Citation (Scopus)


Nasopharyngitis is one of the most common inflammatory diseases in the head and neck region. The diagnosis of nasopharyngitis can easily be made by endoscopy when it is manifested as a local pain or urtication of the pharynx. In chronic stages, however, more general symptoms such as dizziness, chronic headache, tinnitus, and malaise are usually more prominent than those local symptoms, leaving it unnoticed and untreated for months or even years. A variety of medications have been administered but have usually been proven ineffective or have only a limited efficacy. The aim of our study was to examine the effectiveness of topical treatment (application of 1%-zinc chloride, antibiotic, and steroid to the nasopharyngeal mucosa) to alleviate those symptoms. The treatment was carried out up to 8–10 times (1–2 times per week). The severity of each symptom was assessed by a questionnaire using a 5-grade method before and at the end of a series of treatment. The assessment of local inflammation was made on the basis of endoscopic findings. Sore throat (22.1%) was the most common presenting symptom, followed by dizziness (19.1%), foreign body sensation in the throat (14.7%), choanal flow (13.2%), stiff shoulder (5.9%), and headache (5.9%). These symptoms were either eliminated or alleviated in 86.8% of the patients. Endoscopic findings also improved in 60.3%. (A significant correlation was seen between the severity of the symptoms and endoscopic findings.) These results indicate that nasopharyngitis should always be kept in mind in clinical practice when the diagnosis is not otherwise established. Once diagnosed correctly, even the long-lasting symptoms of nasopharyngitis can be relieved by topical treatment in a short period of time.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)50-56
Number of pages7
JournalOto-Rhino-Laryngology Tokyo
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1999


  • endoscopic examination
  • nasopharyngitis
  • topical treatment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology


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