A stereological study on the correlation of inferior turbinate hypertrophy and paranasal sinus disease

Ural A., Songu M., Adibelli Z. H., Candan H.

EUROPEAN ARCHIVES OF OTO-RHINO-LARYNGOLOGY, vol.271, no.9, pp.2437-2441, 2014 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier


The objective of this study is to investigate the correlation between inferior turbinate size and paranasal sinus opacification on computerized tomography (CT) scans. Paranasal sinus CT scans of a total of 185 patients (92 males, 93 females) were examined in terms of sinus opacification. Sizes of the inferior turbinates were measured using stereological method and these sizes in normal and opacified paranasal sinuses are compared using one-way analysis of variance. Scans of 185 patients (93 female, 92 male) aged between 12 and 84 (mean 37.85 +/- A 16.27) years were examined in this study. Sizes of the inferior turbinates were found to be increased significantly in case of opacification of ipsilateral maxillary and anterior ethmoid sinuses (p = 0.000 and p = 0.4, respectively) on both sides. On the other hand, such a relationship could not be demonstrated for sizes of inferior turbinates with opacified or non-opacified posterior ethmoid, frontal and sphenoid sinuses. In conclusion, the combination of CT and the Cavalieri principle can provide an unbiased, direct, and assumption-free estimate of the regions of interest. The presented method can be efficiently applied without any need for special software, additional equipment, or personnel than that required for routine CT in daily use. Paranasal sinus disease, especially the inflammatory diseases of maxillary and anterior ethmoid sinuses, must be carefully investigated in cases with inferior turbinate hypertrophy.