Rhinosinusitis: establishing definitions for clinical research and patient care

J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2004 Dec;114(6 Suppl):155-212. doi: 10.1016/j.jaci.2004.09.029.


Background: There is a need for more research on all forms of rhinosinusitis. Progress in this area has been hampered by a lack of consensus definitions and the limited number of published clinical trials.

Objectives: To develop consensus definitions for rhinosinusitis and outline strategies useful in clinical trials.

Methods: Five national societies, The American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology; The American Academy of Otolaryngic Allergy; The American Academy of Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery; The American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology; and the American Rhinologic Society formed an expert panel from multiple disciplines. Over two days, the panel developed definitions for rhinosinusitis and outlined strategies for design of clinical trials.

Results: Committee members agreed to adopt the term “rhinosinusitis” and reached consensus on definitions and strategies for clinical research on acute presumed bacterial rhinosinusitis, chronic rhinosinusitis without polyposis, chronic rhinosinusitis with polyposis, and classic allergic fungal rhinosinusitis. Symptom and objective criteria, measures for monitoring research progress, and use of symptom scoring tools, quality-of-life instruments, radiologic studies, and rhinoscopic assessment were outlined for each condition.

Conclusion: The recommendations from this conference should improve accuracy of clinical diagnosis and serve as a starting point for design of rhinosinusitis clinical trials.

Publication types

  • Consensus Development Conference
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Clinical Trials as Topic
  • Guidelines as Topic
  • Humans
  • Patient Care
  • Rhinitis* / classification
  • Rhinitis* / diagnosis
  • Rhinitis* / etiology
  • Rhinitis* / therapy
  • Sinusitis* / classification
  • Sinusitis* / diagnosis
  • Sinusitis* / etiology
  • Sinusitis* / therapy