Nasal congestion

Hi, new to forum. Diagnosed with GCA and PMR 6 yr. ago. Being maintained on 5mg. Pred. for awhile with only minor flares. About two months ago developed pain behind and below ears. About a month ago developed what appeared to be severe allergy symptoms -- congested nose, runny nose, watery eyes, and dry cough. Never had allergies before. MD started me on meds for allergies with a no relief. 3 weeks ago the muscle pains, stiffness, and severe headache started with an elevated CRP. Started on 60mg. Pred. and now CRP normal and pain and headache much less. nasal congestion continues. Wondering if anyone has any thoughts on this development?

6 Replies

  • I'm aware that both steroids and GCA can have side effect/symptom of a cough, usually a dry one, but mine would be mixed up with chest problems probably as I also have asthma. This spring/summer has had an unusually high pollen count in my part of the world and I've had to use my emergency inhalers more often than usual ( which is saying a lot - I couldn't remember the last time I had to use them and then discovered mine were out-of-date!). I also have chronic rhinitis but that really only needs more attention (when it becomes annoying) during the spring months. I've got used to a permanently blocked nose and do use a salt inhaler at times which works well for me for both the nose and the chest.

    I'm on a maintenance dose of 5mg Pred, too, and after more than 2 years still hanging in there.

  • I too have seasonal allergies, beginning in February with the hazel and willow catkins and still going strong. I take an anti-histamine and use a nasal spray. Yesterday the pollen got into my larynx. I don't think PMR or use of pred has made this condition any worse or any better. At worst, it feels like a dose of flu.

  • The nasal congestion does not appear to me to be allergies. It is at its worst in the morning and, like the muscle pains and stiffness, seems to improve in the afternoon. Could it be related to GCA or PMR?

  • One symptom of GCA is pain around the ear. The blood flow to the Pinna & Pineal gland is reduced and the result is pain. Check out Google images to see if either of these glands are located at the point of your pain. Also there are arteries on the sides of your nose toward the upper part of it. These can get inflamed with GCA and the feeling is a type of pressure something like a sinus problem. But the pressure seems to be outside of the nostrils. When I first presented with the symptoms of GCA I thought that it was a sinus infection. And I did have some "things" in my sinuses. I don't know if they were related to the GCA , but when they came out I felt a lot better. They were like "pillows" of what seemed like blood. They were about an inch in diameter. They were thicker than blood and the thing tended to stay on the tissue intact. I actually had a sinus surgery where the doctor enlarged the opening between the nasal passages and the sinuses. He also sort of loosened the "things." Anyway they came out through the enlarged openings. I've yet to figure out if it was related to GCA, but I seemed to start getting a little better when they came out. I had yet to be diagnosed. I have read that many people with GCA complain of a dry cough. Even though it's not listed as a common symptom, the literature talks about it. Also I have asthma & when the lung doctor heard about the GCA he asked me if I had a dry cough. Don't know any more than that.

  • Thanks for the info. Will go to Google and check out those glands.

  • I have noticed that since I have had GCA and subsequent medication, I experience a "runny nose" when I eat a meal. It happens at every meal and seems very strange. Does anyone think it is related to the condition. I do not suffer from asthma or chest problems.

    Tomasina x

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