Rhinotopic Therapy for Refractory Rhinosinusitis: Clinical Effectiveness and Impact on the Epithelial Membrane and Mucosal Biofilms
Study design: Prospective pilot clinical study.
Setting: Tertiary rhinology referral center.
Subjects and methods: Twenty-three patients with refractory CRS were treated with the rhinotopic protocol, a multimodality therapy consisting of topical sinus application of antibiotics and corticosteroids through gel and nebulization, endoscopic sinus debridement and saline irrigation. Clinical outcome was assessed using Lund-Kennedy (LK) symptom and endoscopic appearance scores. Mucosal epithelial barrier changes were evaluated through H & E stain. The impact on biofilms was assessed through colony forming units (CFUs) counts.
Results: Following treatment, there was a significant improvement in the patients’ LK symptom and endoscopic appearance scores, in the mucosal epithelial barrier and in the biofilms CFUs count. The clinical improvement was sustained at least 6 months following completion of therapy.
Conclusion: Refractory CRS is a difficult to treat entity that does not respond to traditional medical therapy, including repeated oral antibiotics, commercial nasal steroids, nasal saline rinses and sinus debridement. This work shows that rhinotopic therapy is effective in improving clinical symptoms, healing mucosal damage and disrupting biofilm load in refractory CRS patients. Further work is needed to investigate if single aspects or a collective implementation of the different components of this therapy are responsible for improvement.