Sinusitis in People Living in the Medieval Ages
Breathing vitally serves body homeostasis. The prevalence of upper airway infections is often taken as an indicator of overall health status of a population living at a given time. In the present study we examined the unearthed remains of skulls from the XIII-XV century inhabitants searching for signs of maxillary sinusitis. Maxillary sinuses of the skulls of 92 individuals were inspected macroscopically and, if necessary, endoscopically. Osseous changes, including the pitting and abnormal spicule formation were present in 69 cases (75.0 %). It was found that, overall, dental infection was a major cause of maxillary sinusitis (18.8 %). Severe bone changes were observed in the adults’ skulls, but were also present in the sinus walls of children’s skulls. Post-inflammatory changes were manifest as remodeling and damage to the sinus walls. The results indicate that both children and adults of the Middle Ages suffered from chronic sinusitis. These observations confirm that the climate, environment, and lifestyle of the medieval populations contributed to the morbidity of the upper respiratory tract.
KeywordsAllergization Endoscopy Maxillary sinus Medieval population Mucositis Sinusitis Skull
Conflicts of Interest
The authors declare no conflicts of interest in relation to this article.
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