Sinusitis is an inflammation of the membranes lining the sinuses. When the sinus openings become blocked as a result of the inflammation, the sinus cavities may become filled with fluid. This provides an environment where an infection is more likely to occur.  Acute sinusitis usually starts with cold like symptoms such as a runny, stuffy nose and facial pain. It may start suddenly and last 2-4 weeks. In subacute sinusitis symptoms last for 4 to 12 weeks and in chronic sinusitis they last 12 weeks or longer.  Recurrent sinusitis is diagnosed when a patient experiences at least 4 separate infections in a year, with symptoms resolving completely after each episode. It is important to determine which type of sinusitis a patient suffers from, in order to provide the best treatment options. For this reason, your doctor will ask a number of question about your symptoms and perform a detailed examination of the nasal cavity.  This may require the use of small telescope, a procedure call nasal endoscopy. Treatment typically begins with medication. Should your symptoms persist despite appropriate treatment, you may be a candidate for balloon sinuplasty or endoscopic sinus surgery.