Patients frequently are advised to abstain from nose blowing following endoscopic sinus surgery (ESS), despite a lack of evidence supporting this recommendation. This randomized study assessed whether nose blowing in the first postoperative week affects subjective and objective clinical outcomes.Forty patients undergoing ESS were randomized into an interventional arm in which patients blew their nose at least twice daily for the first 7 postoperative days, or a control arm in which patients refrained from nose blowing. All patients were allowed to blow their nose after 7 days. The frequency and degree of epistaxis was documented by daily diary and visual analog scale (VAS). At 1 and 4 weeks postoperatively, Nasal Obstruction Symptom Evaluation (NOSE) and Sino-Nasal Outcome Test-22 (SNOT-22) were collected, and endoscopies were recorded for blinded Lund-Kennedy scale scoring.There were no differences between the two groups in terms of frequency and duration of bleeding events, VAS epistaxis scores, SNOT-22 scores, and NOSE scores at every postoperative timepoint. Lund-Kennedy scores also were similar at the 1-week (P = 0.0762) and 4-week (P = 0.2340) postoperative visits, but the nose-blowing group had improved nasal discharge subscores at the first (P = 0.0075) and second (P = 0.0298) postoperative visits.Nose blowing after ESS does not appear to measurably improve symptoms of nasal congestion or general sinonasal quality of life, nor does it seem to adversely affect the frequency or severity of postoperative epistaxis during the first postoperative week. Judicious nose blowing may be permissible immediately after uncomplicated ESS.1b. Laryngoscope, 2017.
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