The Eye and Sinus Infections

Many structures that are located within the head are connected via tissue, canals or sinuses. Sinuses are empty spaces within our heads that are lined by mucous membranes. Sometimes they contain blood vessels and nerves, but in general they reduce the head weight and offer some protection in the case of trauma. Some of the major sinuses that relate to the eyes are the ethmoid, cavernous, and maxillary sinuses. Due to the interconnectivity of sinuses, infection or pathology within sinuses can spread to our eyes and brain.

Sinus Cavity Types

  • Ethmoid sinus: we have two in total, with one being located on the nasal aspect of the eye
  • Cavernous sinus: we have two, one located on each side of the midline towards the center of our head
  • Maxillary sinus: we have two, each one sits below our eye ball, under the floor of the orbit (eye socket) floor

Common Sinus Problems

A common sinus problem occurs during allergy season; inflammation can lead to a build-up of pressure in the sinuses leading to headaches. Some people experience allergies that only affect the eyes, sinuses or nasal passageways while others experience a combination of symptoms.

More Serious Sinus Problems

Other problems with the sinuses can be more dangerous. For example, orbital cellulitis is a rare but life threatening infection of the orbit and tissue which requires hospitalization and IV antibiotics. This can be caused by infection of the surrounding soft tissue or a dental infection, but the most common cause of this rare condition is an infection of the ethmoid sinus. Another example is pressure build up that can occur in the carotid sinus. The carotid sinus contains several nerves that control eye movements and the internal carotid artery. Therefore, pathology within that sinus can result in altered blood supply and double vision. A final example of how the eye is closely related to sinuses is with the maxillary sinus which sits below the eye. The roof of the maxillary sinus is also the floor of the orbit. In cases of trauma, an orbital floor fracture can cause the eye and some of the inferiorly located muscles and nerve endings to become trapped within the maxillary sinus resulting in double vision and loss of sensation of part of the face.

A Little Bit About…

A Little Bit About…

Ashley Iketani-Castillo, OD, MS

Dr. Iketani is a Florida native who has a passion for managing ocular disease. She views each patient as a whole person and believes the eyes are a window to a patient’s systemic health. She also has a passion for fitting rigid lenses on patients with corneal disease to help them obtain their best vision.

Dr. Iketani graduated from the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Optometry where she completed internships at the Hefner Veteren’s Affairs hospital in Charlotte, NC and The Metrolina Association for the Blind which focused on Low Vision rehabilitation. Prior to pursuing optometry, she obtained a Masters of Science which focused on developmental genetics and worked as a technician in a lab that researched breast cancer.

Dr. Iketani currently resides in Charlotte with her husband, a pediatric resident, their two cats and they are welcoming a baby boy in December 2018.

Disclaimer

Information contained within this Web site is intended solely for educational purposes and is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice relative to your specific medical condition or question. Always seek the advice of your physician or other health care provider for any questions you may have regarding your medical condition. Only your physician can provide specific diagnoses and therapies. By using this Web site, you agree to this Medical Disclaimer.

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205 E Council Street, Suite B
Salisbury, North Carolina 28144

Phone: (704) 310-5002
Fax: (704) 310-5003
kristin@salisburyeyecareandeyewear.com

 

205 E Council Street, Suite B
Salisbury, North Carolina 28144

Phone: (704) 310-5002
Fax: (704) 310-5003
kristin@salisburyeyecareandeyewear.com

 

Hours:
Monday: 8:30 AM – 5:00 PM
Tuesday: 10:00 AM – 7:00 PM
Wednesday: 8:30 AM – 5:00 PM
Thursday: 8:30 AM – 5:00 PM
Friday: 9:00 AM – 1:00 PM

Hours:
Monday: 8:30 AM – 5:00 PM
Tuesday: 10:00 AM – 7:00 PM
Wednesday: 8:30 AM – 5:00 PM
Thursday: 8:30 AM – 5:00 PM
Friday: 9:00 AM – 1:00 PM

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