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Letters to the Editor
December 2003

Negative Side of Nasal Saline Sprays: They Can Be Harmful

Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2003;129(12):1352. doi:10.1001/archotol.129.12.1352-a

I would like to give my personal opinion concerning the article "Effects of Nasal Saline Spray on Human Neutrophils," that appeared in the June issue of the ARCHIVES.1

I never liked nasal saline sprays. I am afraid that they will wash away the natural mucus blanket that is so protective of the delicate cilia and mucous membrane of the nasal passageways. This will promote drying, which is very harmful, if not destructive, to those delicate tissues. Further, what is being washed away are the lysozymes, which are both bactericidal and bacteriostatic. Also, if you have purulence in one area of the nose, you will spread it to all areas of the nose and sinuses with the spray.