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Redmond Regional Medical Center

Risk Factors for Sinusitis

A risk factor is something that increases your likelihood of getting a disease or condition.

It is possible to develop sinusitis with or without the risk factors listed below. However, the more risk factors you have, the greater your likelihood of developing sinusitis. If you have a number of risk factors, ask your doctor what you can do to reduce your risk.

Risk factors for sinusitis include the following:


Smoking and being exposed to second-hand smoke increases your risk of developing sinusitis.

Certain Medical Conditions

The following medical conditions increase your chances of getting sinusitis:


In general, elderly people and young people have a higher risk of developing acute bronchitis, including sinusitis.


Women have a greater chance of developing sinusitis than men.

Ethnic Background

Whites and blacks have a higher risk of developing sinusitis than do Hispanics.

Environmental Factors

  • Traveling to high altitudes
  • Air pollution
  • Living in the Midwest or southern United States


Flying and diving both increase your chance of getting sinusitis.

Revision Information

  • Reviewer: David Horn, MD
  • Review Date: 08/2015 -
  • Update Date: 09/17/2014 -
  • Acute sinusitis in adults. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: Updated December 18, 2012. Accessed January 9, 2013.

  • Alho OP. Viral infections and susceptibility to recurrent sinusitis. Curr Allergy Asthma Rep. 2005;5(6):477-481

  • Chronic rhinosinusitis. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: Updated December 18, 2012. Accessed January 9, 2013.

  • Sinusitis. American Academy of Otolaryngology website. Available at: Accessed January 9, 2013.

  • Sinusitis overview. American Academy of Allergy Asthma and Immunology website. Available at: Accessed January 9, 2013.

The health information in this Health Library is provided by a third party. Redmond Regional Medical Center does not in any way create the content of this information. It is provided solely for informational purposes. It does not constitute medical advice and is not intended to be a substitute for proper medical care provided by a physician. Always consult with your doctor for appropriate examinations, treatment, testing, and care recommendations. Do not rely on information on this site as a tool for self-diagnosis. If you have a medical emergency, call 911.