Medical Questions > Conditions and Diseases > Ear, Nose and Throat Disorders Forum

Lingering smells and tastes

Must Read
Do you know the three main reasons we cough? Learn common causes of cough and when coughing might indicate a more serious health problem....
Coughing is normal. But what can cause more troublesome coughs? Learn more about possible causes of cough here....
When should you see a doctor about cough symptoms? When are symptoms a sign of further complications? Learn about cough symptoms basics here....
User Profile
About a year ago, my then one year old son head butted me right in the nose. After this, I have stayed mildly congested, generally in the mornings. This May, I developed a fairly severe sinus infection that lasted about three weeks. In June 2008, the same head-butting thing happened again - except it was more of just a tap to my nose this time. I immediately started smelling a constant smell of ammonia. During this time I could smell NOTHING (not even the shampoo in my hair) but the ammonia. About a week later, the ammonia smell dwindled away but I am left with a strong smell of cooking oil. It is particularly strong in my urine and in greasy foods like hamburgers, etc. Sometimes I can taste it in my mouth. I don't eat oily foods very often - in fact I don't cook at home with oil at all. Also, on occasion, i will get a very sweet sugary taste in my mouth that only lasts for a few seconds. I still wake up with slight congestion that goes away mid-morning. What could this be?

Did you find this post helpful?

User Profile
replied August 5th, 2008
Ear, Nose and Throat Disorders Answer A4539
Sinusitis and nose infections can disturb the smelling sense by way of decreasing (hypoosmia) or losing the sense for smell (anosmia). False smells (olfactory hallucinations) are not typical for any sinus infection or other sinus/nose disorders.

Sinus or nasal conditions can’t disturb the sense of taste in any way. False tastes (gustative hallucinations) could indicate something else (neurological disorders, a side effect of certain drugs, psychiatric disorders, etc.).

According to your other symptoms (nasal congestion) that last for a year you probably have chronic sinusitis. You may want to consult an ENT-specialist about your symptoms.

Did you find this post helpful?
This question has been answered by the doctor. This topic is now open for public discussion, however no comments below this point will be answered by a doctor.
DISCLAIMER: "Ask a Doctor" questions are answered by certified physicians and other medical professionals. For more information about experts participating in the "Ask a Doctor" Network, please visit our medical experts page. You may also visit our Ear, Nose and Throat Disorders , for moderated patient to patient support and information.

The information provided on eHealth Forum is designed to improve, not replace, the relationship between a patient and his/her own physician. Personal consultation(s) with a qualified medical professional is the proper means for diagnosing any medical condition.