With winter weather exacerbating many Sjögren’s symptoms, including nasal dryness, the Sjögren’s Syndrome Foundation has been receiving a lot of questions about the use of Vaseline to relieve the pain associated with dryness of the nose and sinuses.
Below is a Question & Answer on this topic and how inhaling Vaseline, when used to sooth nasal dryness, can affect the lungs. This was taken from a past SSF National Patient Conference talk "Lung Complications & Sjögren’s," by Richard Meehan, MD, FACP, FACR.
Q. I’ve been putting Vaseline inside my nose. I’ve read recently that the grease can get in your lungs and cause a special type of pneumonia. So, is this something that you shouldn’t put in your nose?
A. Well, our ENT physicians don’t like Vaseline. They recommend that people frequent the use of nasal spray, that puts the normal saline back in the nostril. Some of them like to use a little bit of olive oil, but generally it's thought that Vaseline is toxic to the lungs if you inhale it.
- Dr. Meehan
Chief of Rheumatology and Professor of Medicine at National Jewish Health in Denver, Colorado. Dr. Meehan also is Co-Director of the Autoimmune Lung Center at National Jewish Health and a specialist in autoimmune diseases and rheumatoid conditions affecting the lungs.
Lung complications are sometimes the most misunderstood and life-threatening manifestations of Sjögren’s. Dr. Meehan will add to your understanding of the various pulmonary complications and leave you with knowledge to share with your own physician. The audio is taken directly from a talk given at our National Patient Conference.
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Non-Member Price: $30
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Each talk is 30-40 minutes long, includes the Question & Answer at the end of each talk, and comes with the handouts used by the presenter.