What Is A Sinus Tract?

Are you curious to know what is a sinus tract? You have come to the right place as I am going to tell you everything about a sinus tract in a very simple explanation. Without further discussion let’s begin to know what is a sinus tract?

Sinus tracts, also known as fistulas or sinus openings, are abnormal passages that develop between a cavity or organ and the skin or another organ. These tracts can occur in various parts of the body, but in this blog post, we will focus on sinus tracts specifically related to the sinuses. Understanding sinus tracts, including their causes, symptoms, and available treatment options, can help individuals suffering from these conditions seek appropriate medical care and relief.

What Is A Sinus Tract?

A sinus tract is an abnormal pathway that forms when an infection, injury, or underlying medical condition causes a collection of pus or fluid to accumulate. The pressure from the buildup creates a channel or tunnel, allowing the discharge to find an escape route to the skin or another body cavity. In the case of sinus tracts related to the sinuses, the abnormal passages connect the nasal cavity or sinus cavities to the skin around the face or neck.

Causes Of Sinus Tracts

Sinus tracts can develop due to a variety of factors, including:

  1. Chronic Sinusitis: Repeated or long-standing episodes of sinus infections can lead to the formation of sinus tracts.
  2. Dental Infections: Infections in the teeth or gums can extend to the nearby sinus cavities and create sinus tracts.
  3. Facial Trauma: Injuries to the face or head, such as fractures or penetrating wounds, can disrupt normal tissue healing and result in sinus tracts.
  4. Foreign Bodies: The presence of a foreign object, such as a nasal piercing or nasal splint, can cause irritation and subsequent sinus tract formation.
  5. Previous Surgeries: In some cases, previous sinus or facial surgeries can lead to the development of sinus tracts.

Symptoms Of Sinus Tracts

Sinus tracts may present with the following symptoms:

  1. Persistent Drainage: Constant or intermittent discharge of pus or fluid from an opening in the skin near the sinuses.
  2. Recurring Infections: Frequent or chronic episodes of sinus infections, accompanied by pain, facial pressure, and other symptoms associated with sinusitis.
  3. Skin Irritation or Swelling: Inflammation, redness, and swelling around the sinus tract opening on the skin.
  4. Pain or Discomfort: Sensations of pain, tenderness, or discomfort around the affected area.

Treatment Options For Sinus Tracts

The management of sinus tracts depends on the underlying cause and severity of the condition. Treatment options may include:

  1. Antibiotics: If the sinus tract is associated with an infection, antibiotics may be prescribed to eliminate the infection and prevent further complications.
  2. Drainage and Wound Care: In some cases, surgical intervention may be necessary to drain any accumulated pus or fluid and ensure proper healing of the sinus tract.
  3. Addressing Underlying Conditions: Treating any underlying conditions, such as chronic sinusitis or dental infections, can help prevent the recurrence or progression of sinus tracts.
  4. Pain Management: Over-the-counter pain relievers or prescription medications may be recommended to alleviate discomfort or pain associated with sinus tracts.

Seeking Medical Advice

If you suspect the presence of a sinus tract or experience persistent symptoms related to your sinuses, it is essential to consult a healthcare professional. They can assess your condition, determine the underlying cause, and recommend appropriate treatment options based on your individual needs.


Sinus tracts are abnormal passages that connect the sinuses to the skin or other body cavities. They can develop due to infections, injuries, or underlying medical conditions. Recognizing the symptoms and seeking medical attention is crucial for proper diagnosis and management. Treatment options may include antibiotics, drainage procedures, and addressing underlying causes. By understanding sinus tracts and seeking timely medical advice, individuals can receive the necessary care and achieve relief from their symptoms.

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What Causes Sinus Tracts?

Cutaneous sinus tracts may arise from several diseases, such as carcinomas, furuncles, osteomyelitis, bacterial infections, congenital fistulas, and pyogenic granulomas.

What Is The Definition Of A Sinus Tract?

A sinus tract (latin: hollow, cavity) is an abnormal channel connecting a cavity lined with granulation tissue to an epithelial surface [2].

How Is A Sinus Tract Treated?

Procedure to clean sinus and encourage healing

Hair and infected tissue are removed, and the sinus cleaned with a special solution. Heat is used to seal the sinus. Plastic surgery is sometimes used if the area being treated is particularly large. The sinus is removed and the surrounding skin reconstructed.

What Is A Sinus Tract Vs Fistula?

A fistula is an abnormal pathological pathway between two anatomic spaces or a pathway that leads from an internal cavity or organ to the surface of the body. A sinus tract is an abnormal channel that originates or ends in one opening.


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