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Steroid nasal sprays

BMJ Group Medical Reference

Using a nasal spray can probably help to improve your symptoms.[11] 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).[11] 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.


For references related to Sinusitis click here.
Last Updated: March 13, 2013
This information does not replace medical advice.  If you are concerned you might have a medical problem please ask your Boots pharmacy team in your local Boots store, or see your doctor.

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