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25 Oct 2017

First social-health research on the use of seawater in respiratory diseases

7 out of 10 users preferred seawater to traditional serum, claiming it even reduces sick days.

Reig Jofre has collaborated in the first worldwide social-health research on the use of seawater for hygiene and relief of symptoms in upper respiratory tract disease.

This research has been promoted by the Spanish Society of Outpatient Pediatrics and Primary Care (SEPEAP), supported by the Spanish Society of Allergology and Clinical Immunology (SEAIC) and the Spanish Society of Otorhinolaryngology (SEORL). Participating were 175 physicians specialized in the treatment of upper respiratory tract diseases in the areas of pediatrics (50%), otolaryngology (30%) and allergology (20%), and 1350 users of seawater of all ages.

Delphi methodology was used in the study among specialty physicians. The results were presented at the SEPEAP conference, held earlier this month Santander (Spain).

According to Venancio Martinez Suarez, Chairman of SEPEAP said: “it is a pioneering program worldwide, in which the main scientific societies involved in nasal health and in the recommendation of seawater as adjuvant treatment have participated to establish both the basis of consensus and discussion on the different seawaters and the beginning of training and information initiatives for health professionals and users on practical recommendations on the use of seawater in hygiene and respiratory diseases, and for improving the level of knowledge of the different seawaters.

Of the specialists who participated in the research, 8 out of 10 agreed on the convenience of using seawater versus physiological serum for congestion, rhinitis, sinusitis, allergic rhinitis or nasal hygiene. Seven out of ten users said they preferred seawater to traditional serum, as it is easy to use, produces a pleasant sensation, and reduces sick days.”

The first decalogue worldwide for recommendations on nasal washing with seawater has been elaborated as a result of this research, based on the characteristics of the different seawaters, their beneficial effects, and their indications as a relief treatment for symptoms such as nasal congestion and mucus.

This decalogue of recommendations establishes that it is generally preferable

  • to use seawater than physiological serum because of its unique composition of trace elements and its lower acidity, which activates mucus clearance, according to previous studies.
  • an application in fine particles and low pressure given the more homogeneous dispersion and exchange of salts and trace elements achieved, rather than a solution jet.
  • the use of isotonic solutions, more balanced with the internal physiological means, instead of hypertonic solutions.
  • In addition, a national survey was carried out among the users of seawater in the nasal lavage to determine the perception of benefits, habits of use and global satisfaction.

    More than 1300 users participated in the survey, most of whom reported having used the product Sterimar marketed by Reig Jofre. Among the main benefits observed regarding physiological serums were

  • the product is easy to use, has an adequate size, and the sensation after its application is pleasant thanks to the fine and smooth spray, which wets the nose evenly.
  • the relief and reduction of congestion and mucus, which improved breathing. Users also emphasised the reduced number of days of illness or duration of the symptoms with respect to previous occasions.
  • the highest perceived benefit by users in relation to the use of other seawater products, as well as the use of traditional physiological serum.
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