Impact of chronic rhinosinusitis on work productivity through one-year follow-up after balloon dilation of the ethmoid infundibulum

Int Forum Allergy Rhinol. 2011 Jan-Feb;1(1):38-45. doi: 10.1002/alr.20008. Epub 2011 Feb 8.


Background: Although multiple clinical trials have demonstrated that balloon dilation of sinus ostia in patients diagnosed with chronic rhinosinusitis (CRS) results in sustained symptomatic improvement, less data are available to measure the effects of sinusitis on worker productivity. The objective of our research was to analyze work and activity impairment before and after transantral, endoscopically-guided balloon dilation of the maxillary sinus ostia and ethmoid infundibulum.

Methods: Subjects diagnosed with CRS and computed tomography (CT) evidence of disease in the maxillary sinuses alone, or maxillary and anterior ethmoid sinuses, completed the Work Productivity and Activity Impairment (WPAI) questionnaire and the Work Limitation Questionnaire (WLQ) before treatment and at 3, 6, and 12 months postprocedure.

Results: A total of 56 subjects were enrolled and 53 completed the 1-year follow-up. The lost productivity composite score computed from the WLQ improved by 73% (9.0 to 2.4; p < 0.0001) at 1-year follow-up whereas lost productivity at work as measured by the WPAI improved by approximately 76% (38.3 to 9.2; p < 0.0001) 12 months after treatment.

Conclusion: These results indicate that sinus-related health problems impose a substantial burden on work productivity and physical/mental activity levels. Treatment of CRS by dilating the maxillary sinus ostium and ethmoid infundibulum can significantly improve quality of life (QOL) and work productivity.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study

MeSH terms

  • Absenteeism
  • Adult
  • Catheterization / methods*
  • Chronic Disease
  • Efficiency
  • Employment / statistics & numerical data
  • Endoscopy
  • Ethmoid Sinusitis / physiopathology
  • Ethmoid Sinusitis / therapy*
  • Humans
  • Maxillary Sinusitis / physiopathology
  • Maxillary Sinusitis / therapy*
  • Middle Aged
  • Occupational Diseases / physiopathology
  • Occupational Diseases / therapy*
  • Physical Fitness
  • Prospective Studies
  • Quality of Life
  • Rhinitis / physiopathology
  • Rhinitis / therapy*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Task Performance and Analysis
  • Treatment Outcome