Novel Computed Tomography Scoring System for Sinus Disease in Adults With Cystic Fibrosis

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There is no easy to use scoring system for computed tomography (CT) scans of the sinuses that is specific to cystic fibrosis (CF). We propose a simple and easily implemented scoring system to quantify severity of sinus disease in adults with CF.

Study Design:

Case series with chart review.


Academic tertiary-care referral center.


Sixty-nine adult patients with CF and 50 age-matched controls.


We validated a scoring system for CF sinus disease. The CT scans were interpreted by 3 physicians on 2 separate sittings. Parameters include maxillary opacification, nasal obstruction, lateral nasal wall displacement, uncinate process absence/demineralization, and presence/absence of mucocele.


Patients with CF aged 21 to 30 years (mean = 24.7 ± 2.49). In CF cohort (n = 69), intrarater reliability for the 10 CT categories ranged from .70 to 1.00. Twenty-six (87%) were in the excellent range, and the remaining 4 (13%) were evaluated as good. In the non-CF cohort (n = 50), reliabilities ranged from .44 to 1.00. Twenty-seven (90%) were in the excellent range. For interrater reliability, in the CF cohort, 10 CT categories across the 3 raters ranged from .55 to 1.00. Excellent reliability was achieved in 15 (50%) of the observations. In the non-CF cohort, reliabilities ranged from .44 to 1.00.


A novel and easy to use CT scoring system for CF sinus disease in adults was validated with inter- and intrarater reliability. This new CF sinus disease–specific scoring system can be used by clinicians, surgeons, and radiologists.

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