Steroid nasal sprays
BMJ Group Medical Reference
Using a nasal spray can probably help to improve your symptoms. The full name for the drugs used in these sprays is corticosteroids. These steroids are not the same as the anabolic steroids used by some bodybuilders. You can buy some steroid nasal sprays over the counter at the pharmacy. For others you'll need a prescription from your doctor. There are several different steroid sprays. Some common ones (with their brand names) are beclometasone (Beconase), budesonide (Rhinocort Aqua), flunisolide (Syntaris), and fluticasone (Flixonase). You breathe these sprays in through your nose once or twice a day.
One summary of the research (a systematic review) found that, two to three weeks after starting treatment, people who used a steroid nasal spray had fewer, or no, symptoms compared with people who used a dummy spray containing no medicine (a placebo). But the difference was small:
73 in 100 people who used a steroid nasal spray had much improved symptoms, or were completely free of symptoms
66 in 100 people who used a dummy spray had much improved symptoms, or were completely free of symptoms.
About one-quarter of the people got side effects, whether they used the steroid nasal spray or the dummy spray. The most common problems were headache and nosebleeds.
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