Pneumosinus Dilatans: A Novel Algorithm for its Classification and Management

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Background:Pneumosinus dilatans (PD) is a rare condition in which one or more paranasal sinuses are pathologically hyperaerated. Patients commonly present with an aesthetic complaint, however it has been associated with several serious conditions. The etiology is largely theoretical and the management remains unstandardized, potentially leading to missed diagnoses. This article aims to establish a presumptive classification scheme and management algorithm based on a comprehensive review of the literature.Materials and Methods:A systematic review of all available publications on the search term "Pneumosinus dilatans" was conducted in PubMed. Associated conditions were identified and clustered based on the number and anatomic location of the sinuses involved. The resultant data was used to formulate an evidence-based algorithm for the evaluation and management of PD patients.Results:A total of 145 patients from 103 articles were included. The majority of patients were male (57.2%) with an average age of 32.6 years-old at onset. The frontal sinus was most commonly involved (62.8%) and one pathologic sinus was most common (84.6%). 51% of patients presented with an associated condition; with it least common in frontal sinus PD (29.7% cases) and most common in ethmoid sinus PD (81.5%). To date, no articles to date have proposed a management algorithm for PD based on the number or location of sinus involved.Conclusions:A standardized evidence-based management algorithm and classification scheme for patients with PD will not only lead to the highest-quality treatment, but will also be instrumental in elucidating an etiology for this rare, and potentially serious, condition.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1391-1395
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Craniofacial Surgery
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jun 1 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • Classification
  • management
  • paranasal sinuses
  • pneumosinus dilatans

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Otorhinolaryngology


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