Most of us dismiss a runny nose as a simple cold that will go away on its own. However, there are cases where it doesn’t go away and that should tell you to seek medical attention right away.
While it’s rare, what some folks initially thought to be a runny nose is actually a nasal leak. Its layman’s name might not sound like much but its technical term, cerebrospinal fluid leak, might just make you realize that it’s a serious condition.
Also referred to as the CSF leak, this is a condition where brain fluid leaks through the ear or nose. It happens when a tear is made in the dura or the thin outer membrane that contains the fluid. This is usually caused by injury or trauma but in some cases, it can also be quite spontaneous. In most cases, folks who experience CSF leaks have it because of prior head trauma.
The said fluid is the same one that circulates around the brain and spinal cord. It serves as cushioning to your brain, relieving pressure to the vital organ. Experts say that a person with a nasal leak can lose about half a liter of brain fluid in a day.
Nasal Leak Symptoms
How do will you know if you’re experiencing CSF leak? The most major sign that you should be wary of is a clear, watery drainage from your nose. As mentioned above, nasal leaks are usually confused with a runny nose because they have similar characteristics. However, colds should only last two to three weeks while nasal leaks tend to last longer as they don’t necessarily go away.
If this cold followed some time after head trauma, you should also suspect a nasal leak. While the condition is still considered to be quite rare, it’s not a completely scarce condition. In fact, support groups for patients have already been formed so it’s quite safe to say that this condition isn’t a one in one billion occurrence.
The increase in drainage should also clue you in that you’re suffering from a nasal leak. If the outward flow of the fluid increases when the head is tilted downwards, then, there’s a good chance that you’re suffering from a CSF leak and not just a runny nose.
It should also be noted, however, that CSF leaks can also come out of a patient’s ear. The condition is similar to nasal leaks in all regards except for where the fluid exits the head.
CSF leak also tends to come with the following symptoms as a result of the decrease in the amount of fluid around the brain:
Treating CSF Nasal Leak
A case of CSF leak will make the sufferer at risk of meningitis. This is why it’s crucial to learn how to treat the condition right away.
Fortunately, some cases heal on its own. However, there are others that will need a surgery to fix. This is why it’s imperative that you see an ENT specialist right away if you suspect that you’re having a nasal leak. For appointment to consult our ENT specialist, please contact HK ENT Specialist Ltd. which is a professional Hong Kong based ENT clinic centre offering ENT services.
HK ENT Specialist Ltd.
Hong Kong based ENT clinic centre
For ENT Services, Audiology & Speech Therapy,
Sleep Disordered Breathing Management,
Hearing Aid Prescription & Medical Cosmetic Services
Our immune system constantly works hard to protect our body from harm caused by alien substances like toxins, bacteria, and viruses. Blood proteins called antibodies attack and remove these foreign substances from our body to prevent them from causing illnesses and infections.
The immune system is one of those things that you don’t really notice as long as it’s doing its job right; but once it malfunctions, it’s hard to ignore. Sometimes, the human body mistakenly identifies its own as foreign and attacks itself. This is what we call an autoimmune reaction. Continue reading
As we age, our bodies’ physiology also changes – our muscles become weaker, our joints become stiffer, and our skin starts to sag, among others. But we often overlook our changing voice including the differences in its tone and pitch, as well as our ability to speak in ways that others can understand well.
We shouldn’t dismiss these voice-related issues because these can affect our quality of life. If it applies to you, you should raise your voice, so to speak, and raise your concerns with your otolaryngologist. If you don’t have one, you will find plenty of ENT doctors who will listen to your concerns and work closely in finding the best possible solutions for them.
Know the Causes
For many elderly people, their voice-related issues are mainly due to their aging larynx, known as presbyphonia, and to glottic insufficiency (i.e., the vocal cords aren’t closing solidly). This causes several voice changes in terms of pitch and tone, as well as in shorter duration in phonation and in poor vocal projection. These changes can make it challenging to express yourself even to family and friends, even affect your sense of confidence.
But it isn’t just the voice-related parts that contribute to your aging voice. It may also be caused by an underlying medical condition that affects pulmonary capacity (i.e., breathing) and neurological function. It may also be a symptom of an underlying medical condition that, once appropriately treated, can reduce the impact of the voice alterations.
The underlying medical conditions include tumors, allergies, changes in hormones, and gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). Your doctor will consider the possibility that, indeed, there are multiple factors affecting the quality of your voice. You may, for example, observe changes in your voice as the first symptom in a diagnosis of ALS or Parkinson’s disease, a common occurrence.
Know the Treatments
Fortunately, your otolaryngologist can recommend several treatments that can improve the quality of your voice. You have to choose from among these treatments depending on your own needs for them. You may have to combine two or more treatments for the best results.
You will also likely be taught about effective coping mechanisms in dealing with your changing voice. No matter your treatment plan, you should strive for compliance if and when you want to benefit from it.
For more details of our ENT services, please contact HK ENT Specialist.
HK ENT Specialist
offering ENT services,
Hearing aids prescription,
Swallowing disorder assessment and treatment,
Head and Neck Oncology,
Sleep disordered breathing Management,
and Facial Plastic Surgery, etc.
Health issues related to the ears, nose and throat are common among children with Down syndrome. Most of these issues are also present throughout the children’s lives thus emphasizing the importance for both parents and ENT doctors to work closely in their management. Their effective management is a must, too, considering that ENT issues are closely linked to the child’s physical, mental and social development. Continue reading
When the elderly have chronic rhinitis, the most common complaints, health-wise, include:
For the most part, the symptoms of rhinitis or sinusitis among seniors are the same as in younger populations. But because of their age, ENT doctors must consider the special considerations that affect seniors with rhinitis. Continue reading
Don’t be tongue-tied when telling your doctor about the possibility that your child may have the condition known as tongue-tie (ankyloglossia). Your child’s quality of life can be adversely affected when it’s left untreated, especially when surgery is required. Your child, fortunately, can live a normal life when his condition has been treated – and the treatment is easy, too! Continue reading
Think of the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) as a sliding hinge – it’s the connection between your jawbone and your skull. In fact, you have one of it on each side of your jaw! But it’s also vulnerable to injuries and illnesses.
TMJ disorders are no laughing matter because of their painful symptoms. If you have been diagnosed with it, you have likely suffered from pain, soreness and tenderness in your jaw and/or joint. You may also have difficulty in chewing, sharp pains in your face and in your ear, and locking of the jaw, which means you have difficulty in opening and closing your mouth. Continue reading
Tinnitus refers to the perception of noise by the affected person –and studies have shown that 1 in 5 people are affected by it. But it isn’t a medical condition in itself but it is instead a symptom of an underlying health issue, which can be an ear injury or age-related hearing loss.
Indeed, the determination of the cause of tinnitus is a must for formulating an effective treatment plan. When we say “effective treatment plan”, we don’t necessarily mean that the ringing, buzzing, or clicking noises will be completely eliminated. In some cases, the symptoms can only improve in the sense that these noises are reduced in severity, frequency and duration. Continue reading
Sleep apnea (or sleep disorder) will definitely affect sleep quality! If you have been diagnosed with it, your breathing will either be nearly completely or completely obstructed on an intermittent basis during the night. You will then briefly wake up to remove the obstruction, which will adversely impact your otherwise restful sleep.
Fortunately, you can seek medical treatment and adopt lifestyle remedies to improve your symptoms. You will then enjoy more restful sleep periods that will improve your health in more ways than one. Continue reading
Don’t leave otitis media untreated, especially in children! This is a serious condition that demands immediate medical attention because it’s the most common cause of hearing loss among children. Indeed, there shouldn’t be a middle ground when it comes to otitis media – either you have it treated ASAP or it will result to hearing loss.
Middle Ear Infection
Otitis media simply translates to inflammation of the middle ear, usually as a result of an infection. It may occur in just one ear although it can also occur in both ears. It may affect adults, too, but only occasionally, unlike children where it’s more common. Continue reading