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» LymeNet Flash » Questions and Discussion » Medical Questions » Steroid nose spray--I need some advice!

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Author Topic: Steroid nose spray--I need some advice!
gwb
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Today I went to my ENT doctor and he confirmed what my alternative doctor said yesterday regarding me having a sinus infection. But he said to me, "Your sinus infection is secondary to your allergies. We need to get your allergies better!"

I had no idea I had allergies. Recently I've been waking up with swelling in my head and eyes hurt. ENT doctor said my allergies are terrible and I must treat it now.

He prescribed amoxy for the inefection AND Nasacort AQ nasal spray for the allergies. On WebMd, here's what it says about this spray, "Triamcinolone (Nasacort AQ) belongs to a class of drugs known as corticosteroids. It works by reducing swelling (inflammation) in the nasal passages".

I told him Lyme and steroids don't mix so I can't take it. He said the spray will not bother my Lyme or muck with my immune system. He's a top notch doctor but he isn't Lyme literate.

Could someone please tell me if this is safe to take? My ENT said it wasn't optional as the inflammation in my sinuses are serious and need immediate treatment.

After what happened to me taking steroid shots a few months ago and having such a terrible experience from that, I'm reluctant to take this nasal spray.

Has anyone taken this before and do you think it's safe to take with lyme?

Gary

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h8lyme
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Topical steroids (which Nasacort AQ is) are supposed to not effect Lyme as much. Its when the steroid suppresses the immune system when problems arise. That is my understanding anyway. I have had issues with asthma and still use a spray. Sprays for allergies are similar to sprays for lungs. They both do the same thing.

Most people that have really bad allergies develop asthma at some point and time. Basically your airways in your lungs closing up due to outside irritants, similar to what your nose does when you suffer from allergies.

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AnnaL
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My allergist said that the steriods in nasal sprays act locally and do not really get into the blood stream.

So I wouldn't worry. However, there are antihistamine nasal sprays that do not contain (as far as I know) steroids.

I was rx'ed Astelin, and it's great for my allergies. I have not had any adverse side effects (drowsiness, etc.) that I get from oral antihistamines. I use Astelin along with Nasonex (a steroid spray).

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laurajeanne
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There are other sprays that do not contain steroids that work just as well.

--------------------
I'll make the most of it,
I'm an extraordinary machine

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sutherngrl
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My doc says the same thing. I think the problem with steroids is when you take them in pill form or as an injection.
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Renee K
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Sorry but I took them for same reason and ended up with sores in my nose.

If you read the package insert it can and does get into the bloodstream

allergies improve when Lyme is treated

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sutherngrl
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I think the point is, its not enough steroid to be worry about. Even if a small amount did get absorbed its not a significant amount.

Anyway, it would depend on how bad your allergies are as to whether you need to use something for them or not. If you are on antibiotics the nasal spray shouldn't be a problem where the lyme is concerned.

As far as sores in the nose, that might be a side effect of the medication; and doesn't sound like much fun.

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trigal2
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I have/had the same issue with nasal and sinus problems.

My ENT perscribed Veramyst - nasal steriod spray similar to Nasacort. The abx for my sinus infection was the same one I am taking for lyme so that worked out pretty well!

Prior to taking the spray I asked my LLMD if it was contraindicated. He said nasal steriod sprays are fine to take and will not effect the immune system in a negative way because it stays in your nasal cavity with only a tiny, tiny amount possibly getting into your blood stream.

I have been taking it for about a month and a half and have not noticed any adverse effects. I continue to do well on my abx tx for lyme and my immune system seems to be gathering some force so I really do not think it has effected my immune system in a negative way.

The spray, however, has not helped very much with my nasal symptoms. TG

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hoot
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How about trying a neti pot using a saline solution?
Just a thought...

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Lemon-Lyme
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I've also been told it is safe to take, pretty much no systematic absorption.

An alternative to consider is NasalCrom, which my ENT likes a lot. No steroids, OTC. Only downside is you have to take it for about 2 weeks or so to notice any benefit.

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Keebler
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-
First,

Did the doctor advise you to avoid all dairy, gluten and corn products? That is the most important step. That might just clear up your sinuses in no time.

Allergies or not, certain foods increase the production of phlegm/mucous in the body, most often noticeable in ears, nose and throat.

Dairy products, Gluten (in wheat, rye, barley), and Corn are the ones that all patients with inner ear disorders are told to avoid. When I did that, my sinuses also cleared but getting OFF years of RX sprays was the best thing I ever did.

True, not treating is not an option. But there are others ways to aggressively approach this.


Did he teach you how to use a neti pot?

Did he mention Quercerin as a superb supplement that helps bring allergies under control?

Taking allicin capsules orally also clear up my sinuses very well.

* Please talk to your LLMD. SInus problems are a huge challenge for lyme patients. You can't just go to any doctor anymore. Every doctor needs to be LL or you just can't rely on their knowledge.

Those steroids could cause you LOTS of problems. Topical steroids do get into your body and they are advised against by LLMDs. And they really don't even address the source of the problem.

Curcumin is a good anti-inflammatory agent. Allicin helps with infection, the Quercetin (also Stinging Nettle) can reduce the cytokine storm - and the diet changes remove some of the things that produce phlegm, which all bacteria, viruses and fungi love. It's where they can really camp out.

The Sea Salt and warm water with NETI POT use - or with xylitol - is also a wonderful tool.

Search YouTube for instructional videos. You can use a glass measuring cup, too.

Getting rid of the phlegm will help a lot.

Good luck.
-

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Keebler
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-

http://www.vrp.com/ArticlesSearch.aspx?k=Sinus

Search results for Sinus - 21 Articles

One of those:

http://www.vrp.com/articles.aspx?ProdID=art786&zTYPE=2

Xlear

. . .

Xlear (pronounced clear) is a patented, non-addictive nasal wash designed to aid in the relief of irritation caused by pollutants, allergens and infections of the nasal passages.

It is the only nasal wash that has combined the unique properties of the natural substance, Xylitol, and the health-promoting practice of a saline nasal spray to help wash, hydrate and moisturize nasal passages.

. . . .

==============

http://www.vrp.com/articles.aspx?ProdID=art2064&zTYPE=2

Food and Environmental Allergies: Controlling the Body's Burden

- By Chris D. Meletis, ND

[Includes Nutritional Support for Allergies]


===============

Excellent point below about fungal infections, abx and steroids will do nothing to help if fungi are involved. In fact, they can make it worse. Now, I'm not saying not to take the abx as if you have a serious bacterial infection, the amoxy may be very important.

But, you also have to figure out how to cover the bases for fungal involvement. A steroid spray would make that worse.

----

From: ``The One Earth Herbal Sourcebook'' (Tillotson, et.al.)

http://oneearthherbs.squarespace.com/diseases/chronic-sinus-problems-sinusitis.html

Chronic Sinus Problems - Sinusitis

Excerpt:

. . . Often overlooked, for example, are chronic low-level FUNGAL infections of the sinus cavity, found in almost all cases. . . .

Natural Medicine Treatment for Chronic Sinusitis

. . .

The first step is to reduce as much as possible allergy triggers, such as pets, molds, fungus and poor indoor air. This important step is covered in our article on the basics of respiratory system treatment [found at this link]:

http://oneearthherbs.squarespace.com/diseases/basics-of-respiratory-system-treatment.html


back to link at the top of this page:

. . . You can also use nose drops made with xylitol, also used for ear infections, to kill sinus infections in the early stages.

. . . [probiotics for the sinuses are also mentioned here]

-

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gwb
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Thanks to everyone for their informative comments.

Keebler, no the ENT did not advice me to avoid dairy, gluten and corn products. I have been avoiding all except dairy (plain yogurt).

Never heard of neti pot. You're the second person on this thread to mention it. I will look it up.

He said nothing about all of the other remedies you mentioned. He's a traditional ENT and I'm sure he knows nothing about all of this natural stuff.

He said that my inflammation and infection is very serious and needs immediate attention. I never had a clue that I had sinus problems. No stuffiness, no congestion, no pain in the nasal, nothing.

Three days ago I began getting a swelling feeling in the brain and my eyes started hurting. From time to time would smell something like an infection but it was not prominent or constant, just occasional.

Anyway, I will definitely look into all of these remedies that you mentioned and even start some of them now. I do have some Allicin (Biopure) but it burns my stomach even when I take them with food. Unfortunately, I have a very sensitive stomach.

I have some curcumin capsules that I can take and will start those tonight.

I appreciate all your advice, it's very helpful. I do feel that because of the seriousness of the infection that I will use the cortisone nasal spray because I don't want this to get worse as the consequences are serious.

I hope and pray that the steroids in this spray do not affect my immune system. It appears that because it's a small amount I should be OK. I'm frightened to use the spray, but I'm also concerned about the infection getting out of control.

Anyway, I do appreciate your comments and I will definitely start on the curcumin tonight and make a note to get some of the other items you mentioned in your post.

Thanks much!

Gary

P.S. I'm also taking 250 mg of amoxy three times a day. Is there any contradictions to taking amoxy with various supplements, herbs and vitamins or is it pretty safe to take these with amoxy? I'm also taking OLE and hope that doesn't conflict with amoxy too.

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Keebler
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-
Gary,

Did the ENT take a culture of nasal secretions? If not, how will he know if it is fungal in nature, or bacterial or viral?

Did he also swab for staph ?

Just my opinion, but I would want to know specifics.

Sadly, even organic plain yogurt will attack my sinuses within 30 minutes. Even one bite. I truly miss it but each time I try, my sinues swell and then serious lung infections clobber me - so I can live without yogurt.

I get probiotics (non-dairy) in capsules or from my miso soup.


Do NOT take allicin if it burns your stomach. Never force garlic or allicin if you feel burning.


I would use the OLE (Olive Leaf Extract) instead. That is also anti-fungal so excellent for you for several reasons.

If you take Quercertin, that may move out meds faster but you'll have to read/ ask and timing may be the key - away from the time of abx.

As for OLE, I've taken that when on abx, just not at the same time.

I have to say that any ENT who does not advise avoiding the foods mentioned should not get paid. That is the best thing my ear doctor taught me: phlegm must not be allowed to accumulate.

As for the serious nature of the inflammation, please contact your LLMD about this. Inflammation is a huge factor with lyme + co.

You can ask him/her about the supplements, too. He may have some better ideas. I wish you could consult a LL ND (naturopathic doctor) or a L.Ac. (acupuncturist). Ask your LLMD if he knows of others who are LL and also schooled in natural methods as a complement to your work with him.

Oh, wait, first line in your first post - you have an alternative doctor. Geez, I should learn to read. Your alternative doctor would have discussed most of this with you already and, in addition to talking to your LLMD, you should check back with all the people you are working with to be sure everyone is one the same page.

And, since you awaken feeling worse, I assume they've discussed how to treat your bedroom, cleaning it, making it as dust free as possible, tossing out any fluffy fabrics, etc.

Good luck, whatever you decide.
-

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Keebler
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-
I hope one of your doctors thought to tell you to get a new shower head:

--------

http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2009/09/16/2688081.htm

Taking a shower can 'damage your health'

By Bronwyn Herbert for The World Today

. . .

Leah Feazel, who led the three-year study, says 30 per cent of the shower heads studied housed significant levels of a micro-organism linked to lung disease.


. . . mycobacterium avium in a significant number of shower heads. Mycobacterium avium can cause tuberculosis-like disease in people who are immune compromised.


"If you are prone to infections, so if you have an immune disease of some sort, which is HIV or AIDS or cystic fibrosis, or if you're on immune-suppressing drugs then yes, you are at risk in the shower," she continued.

"If you're a healthy person with a healthy immune system, you don't need to worry at all. You've been showering every day of your whole life and you haven't been sick."

And Ms Feazel says cleaning the shower heads does not reduce the amount of bacteria.

"We tested bleaching shower heads and we actually found that we had more of the mycobacteria after bleaching than we did before," she said.
. . .

The researchers sampled shower heads in cities across the United States, including Manhattan, Memphis and Chicago.
Ms Feazel says there were nine cities in seven states, and 45 shower head sites.

-

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karenl
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X-lear is so great!!

camomilla tea inhaled every night will solve your problem.

I would never take a steroid for an allergy.

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julielynne4
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Before my lyme/coinfections diagnosis, I had horrible sinus infections chronically. (I have only had one since starting treatment, and that one was when I was off abx).

At one point my primary doc put me on Nasonex (I know it's not exactly the same as Nasacort, but a steroid nasal spray). I didn't know what the heck was going on, but being on that made me MISERABLE.

It was a horrible experience. I am certain that it gets into the bloodstream - I don't doubt it, because of the effect it had on me physically and mentally. I think it was a trigger for the lyme.

I agree 100% that you should call your LLMD and also I love the nedi pot!

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gwb
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After reading all of these comments now I'm very reluctant to use the spray now. Gee, nothing is simple in life anymore when you have lyme disease is it?

Well, I looked at the neti pot online and it looks pretty disgusting but it makes sense too. I'm sure our 24 hour Walgreen's stocks them on their shelves--not. If they did I'd be tempted to go buy one right now.

Lot's to think about. Thanks for your comments everyone. I think for now I'll do the abx for the infection and think about what to do for the allergies.

Keebler, the shower head is something that's on our list to buy. Just haven't taken the time to do it yet. Been wanting one for awhile now. Thanks for the reminder!

Gary

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Rumigirl
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You don't need a netti pot to do the nasal wash. I use, and advise my clients to use, either a bulb syringe (they're often called baby ear syringes in the drug store) or an empty plastic squeeze bottle.

So you can get these at any drug store. Often in the baby section. (The drug store staff may have no clue, however, if you ask them).

And, yes, the nasal washes are essential!! But don't use tap water; the chlorine can burn your sinuses. Use filtered or spring or distilled water.

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AnnaL
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My Walgreen's stocks at least two brands of neti pot/squeeze bottle nasal rinse devices. Check in the cold/flu section.
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bigstan
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Gary you said "He said that my inflammation and infection is very serious and needs immediate attention."

Listen to your doctor, do what he tells you to do. A sinus infection can spread to the eye sockets leading to blindness,the brain bringing on a coma, and even cause death.

Take the Nasacort AQ nasal spray. Control the infection.

--------------------
HERX is a Four Letter Word!

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gwb
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bigstan, thanks for chiming in on this and giving me your input. I agree with you and went ahead and took the spray this morning. Thanks for encouraging me to do this.

Gary

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Renee K
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Gary

My nasal inflammation was diagnosed as sinusitis before I finally was diagnosed with Lyme

The nasalcort, then nasonex did not help, I lost my sense of smell, when it didnt work at the first dose they told me to up the dose, then I had nosebleeds and the sores, convinced I had candida in my nose but they wouldn't address it

Then told the only thing that would help me was
sinus surgery...I ran from that ENT and went to an integrative ENT in NY City that treats the way
Keebler stated.

The steroid spray was not helping me, he made me drop it immediately

I did not have a sinus infection but inflammation .....know now it was from the Lyme

And the ENT in NY city also looked at the CT scan the conventional ENT said proved I needed surgery....he saw absolutely nothing to indicate infection or anatomical defect....there was nothing to operate on.

Nasacort will not control an infection, it is a steroid, steroids allow infection . They work by reducing inflammation IF allergies are the only cause.

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lymebytes
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No steroids, not ever of any kind w/a bacterial infection. They nearly killed me.

IMO, your doctor telling you that nasal steroids don't get into your bloodstream, is like saying doing cocaine in your nose won't reach the blood either. Everything we ingest through nose, blood, mouth, etc., is systemic and reaches all parts of our body, right down to vitamins.

My LLMd blows a fuse when you ask a very common question about substances going further, crossing the BBB - if you ask him, "does this or that cross the blood brain barrier?" He says, EVERYTHING we ingest crosses the blood brain barrier otherwise we could not live. Meaning fairly simple things like vitamins from foods, etc. Makes sense to me.

I highly advise against all steroids in any form and Dr. Burrascano warns not to do them all time.

Here is a couple of paragraphs from a site regarding the dangers of steroids with the the link at the end:

Doctors tell you that steroids (cortisone, prednisone, etc.) only cause side effects after many years. But new research shows that permanent damage is immediate and devastating. Studies show that steroids can cause permanent, debilitating effects after a single dosage. Inflammation contributes to more pain, disease, and disability than any other condition.

Far from being a wonder drug 'cure all', steroids cannot cure one single condition. All they do is suppress your body's ability to express a normal response. In a few instances, this type of suppression will give the body a chance to heal itself. But more often, the effect is immediate, devastating and permanent damage. And we are only now realizing just how quickly damage can occur. Despite what doctors say, that steroids only have side effects after many years of use, there is no such thing as a safe dose. Full article at this link: http://www.shirleys-wellness-cafe.com/steroids.htm

--------------------
www.truthaboutlymedisease.com

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carly
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gary,
after getting sores/nosebleeds from these sprays, my pcp told me to stop them (I didn't need to be told).

ENT rx'd nasocort again sometime later, I told him of my previous problem.

He said it's common and there's a possible simple solution:
use the right hand to administer to left nostril
use the left hand to administer to right nostril

He was right, in my case. I was on them a short time to help control a serious situation.

Carly.

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