What is Wilson’s Solution? 

written by Bailee Nalls with Belmont University College of Pharmacy 

 

WHAT IS IT? 

Wilson’s Solution, also known as gentamicin sinus irrigation, is a rinse that is used as a treatment for sinusitis. It contains the antibiotic gentamicin which is mixed into normal saline.  

 

GENERAL INFORMATION 

What is sinusitis?  

Inflammation or swelling of the tissues that line the sinuses. The sinuses can get blocked and fill with fluid in which bacteria can grow and cause an infection.  

Common signs and symptoms include postnasal drip, nasal discharge or stuffy nose, facial pressure or headache, cough, tiredness, and fever.   

 It can be caused by things such as the common cold, seasonal and nasal allergies, growths, and/or a deviated septum. 

 

How do you use Wilson’s Solution?  

Measure out the amount of solution you will need for the rinse. Let that measured out solution sit for about 30 minutes to get to room temperature.  

Pour the solution into the sinus rinse bottle and irrigate the one nostril with half of the bottle and then do the other nostril with the remaining half of the bottle.  

Rinse both nostrils with the solution two times a day for two weeks unless you have been instructed to use it longer.  

 

Where can you get Wilson’s Solution? 

Wilson’s Solution is a compounded medication that is made at specialty compounding pharmacies, like Midtown Express Pharmacy. Your doctor or provider will prescribe it and send it to our pharmacy that can make it for you.  

 

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS: 

Does Wilson’s Solution need to be refrigerated? 

Yes, the solution that is not actively being used to rinse needs to stay in the refrigerator. 

 

Can nasal irrigation be harmful? 

It is considered to be safe. A small number of people could have nasal irritation. There is a mild amount of burning that is to be expected when first starting the medication. 

 

Can you use nasal irrigation too much? 

You should not be using nasal irrigation unless you have an active infection. Long-term use can be harmful and can cause infections.  

 

References: 

Sinus infection (sinusitis). Cleveland Clinic. Updated June 4, 2020. Accessed August 6, 2021. https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diseases/17701-sinusitis 

Gentamicin sinus irrigation. Nevada Sinus Relief. Accessed August 6, 2021. 

https://nevadasinusrelief.com/gentamicin-sinus-irrigation/.  

Sinus irrigations with gentamicin. University of Washington Medical Center. Updated March 2014. Accessed August 6, 2021. 

https://healthonline.washington.edu/sites/default/files/record_pdfs/Sinus-Irrigation-Gentamicin.pdf 

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