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Dr. Sohaib
Dr. Sohaib, Doctor
Category: Health
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Experience:  M.B;B.S ; FCPS Experienced in all Medical Specialties
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A friend in Russia used rubbing alcohol drops in her nose to

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A friend in Russia used rubbing alcohol drops in her nose to clear her sinuses during an infection. She used so much that it destroyed her sense of smell completely. It has been gone for two weeks now. Will it ever return? Is there anything she can do to recover her sense of smell?

Hello and thank you for the question.
Answers given are for informational purposes only and are not meant to replace an exam by an in-person.

I am Dr. Sohaib, a practicing Internal Medicine Specialist and i will do my best to help you today.

This may return or may not --- depending upon the damage to the olfactory mucosa.

The most important step here is not to repeat the same again.

And the sinus infection should be treated effectively and must be eradicated.

Transient anosmia (transient loss of sensation of smell) can be experienced during and after (up to few weeks) an infection involving sinuses (cold/flu).

Since only 2 weeks have elapsed, she should wait for another 2-4 weeks and ideally any reversible damage to the sensation of smell should recover --- and if this does not, the chances of recovery are not good.

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