Objective: To investigate the relationship between the extent of sinus disease in chronic sinusitis as detected radiologically by computed tomography (CT) scan and the population of cilia (ciliary area) both before and after functional endoscopic sinus surgery (FESS). In a simple way this is a trial to statistically prove that the CT scan could be a valid indicator and a mirror of the histological status of the sinus mucosa.
Design: Twenty adult patients were enrolled in this study. Radiological extension of the sinus disease was quantitated using the classification proposed by Kennedy in 1992 and the ciliary population was studied using scanning electron microscopy and image analysis softwares.
Results and conclusion: The more advanced the sinusitis, as evidenced by CT scans, the more the expected reduction in the ciliary area (CA) and in the ciliary count. But after FESS the degree of ciliary regeneration does not depend statistically on the radiological condition of the sinuses and the degree of opacity prior to intervention, i.e. a statistically valid inverse relationship exists between the radiological stage of sinusitis and the ciliary population pre-operatively but the same relation does not extend to the ciliary population post-operatively.