Coincidental supraorbital neuralgia and sinusitis

Yoav P. Talmi*, Yehuda Finkelstein, Michael Wolf, Yosef Ben-Shoshan, Jona Kronenberg

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Headache interpreted as treatment failure may be encountered after FESS or pharmacological treatment for chronic sinusitis. This persistent symptom may lead, even in the presence of minimal sinus disease, to frequent office visits, medical treatment, primary surgery, and revision procedures. A prospective study of patients with a documented history and imaging-verified sinus disease with persistent atypical refractory headache were evaluated. Diagnostic measures included injection of local anesthetic and response to carbamazepine. Severe neuralgia of the supraorbital nerve was identified in 11 patients with chronic sinusitis, treated either medically or surgically before inclusion in the study. Eight of the patients underwent surgery for sinus disease, and five of them had revision surgery because of persisting complaints. All patients responded favorably to the local injection, and eight were treated with carbamazepine. In certain cases, headache in sinusitis patients may be caused or aggravated by supraorbital neuralgia. Sinus disease is possibly a causative factor but conceivably plays the role of a 'red herring'. This readily diagnosed and treated coexistence may be more prevalent than recognized formerly.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)463-468
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Rhinology
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1999
Externally publishedYes


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