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Ugeskr Laeger. 1996 May 27;158(22):3156-9.

[Clinical criteria for acute maxillary sinusitis in general practice].

[Article in Danish]

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Aalborg Sygehus.


The purpose of the investigation was to examine the diagnostic value of various symptoms, clinical findings, erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR) and serum C-reactive protein (CRP) in acute maxillary sinusitis using the aspiration of purulent or mucopurulent from the sinus of a patient with a pathological CT-scanning as the golden standard. Of 174 patients with suspected acute maxillary sinusitis seen in general practice we found 70% to have a pathological CT-scanning and 53% to have pus or mucous pus in the sinus aspirate. Only the ESR and CRP level were found to be significantly and independently associated with a positive diagnosis as defined by the golden standard. A clinical criterion based on either an elevated ESR and/or CRP level in a patient with pain related to the maxillary sinus region had sensitivity of 0.82, a specificity of 0.57, a positive predictive value of 0.68 and a negative predictive value of 0.75, and was diagnostically superior to the clinical examination. The investigation also confirms that this disease is most likely overdiagnosed in general practice.

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