The olfactory organ, the nose, is distinguished by the outer, visible part, the inner part and the paranasal sinuses. All areas can be affected by diseases which require different therapies depending on the type, location and severity of the disease.
Nasal and paranasal sinus inflammation+
In the most common infectious disease, the inflammation of the main nasal cavity (rhinitis or a runny nose), the nasal mucosa is mainly affected. Acute rhinitis is spread through droplet transmission, the actual causes are, however, very diverse. Anatomically bordering the main nasal cavity, the sinuses can quickly be affected by an accompanying inflammation (sinusitis). The transition is often fluid. A rhinosinusitis is the case when both areas are inflamed at the same time.
Obstruction of nasal breathing+
The most common causes of obstructed nasal breathing in adults is septum deviation as well as enlarged nasal concha, and more rarely, polyps or tumours. Depending on the cause, conservative or surgical therapies are available. The most common cause in children is an enlarged adenoid, which can be removed under full anaesthesia (adenoidectomy).
Straightening the nasal septum (septoplasty)+
The surgical correction of a deviated nasal septum can significantly improve nasal breathing. This procedure takes about one hour, thereafter the nose is packed for 24 hours. If the nasal breathing impairment is also due to enlarged nasal concha, which cannot be treated with conservative therapies by means of cortisone nasal sprays, then turbinoplasty can be combined with the septoplasty. The aftercare (nose care) is performed in our practice.
Nose bleeding (epistaxis) is usually a harmless, but worrying symptom. It occurs often, as it can be triggered by manipulation of the nose or frequent sneezing. Local causes include inflammations (rhinitis) or dry mucous membranes as a result of dry ambient air. If the bleeding cannot be stopped by cooling or compressions, the bleeding vessel often needs to be cauterised under local anaesthesia.
The nose is particularly prone to fractures caused by accidents or impact. This can cause nasal bone fractures, mid-face fractures and bleeding into the nasal septum (septum haematoma). In cases of a significantly altered nose shape, the nose can be repositioned under local anaesthesia or short narcosis.
Reduced sense of smell+
One distinguishes between the total loss of the sense of smell (anosmia) and the reduction of the sense of smell (hyposmia). Hyposmia mostly occurs within the framework of polyps or after rhinitis. Rarer causes include taking certain medication (e.g. antidepressants), breathing in dust and pollutants (e.g. chlorine), zinc deficiency, diabetes mellitus or cranial and facial injuries. For the treatment of hyposmia it is important to have an ENT physician determine the relevant cause.
In the nasal area, tumours are differentiated as external tumours or tumours in the nose or sinuses. External tumours (e.g. actinic keratosis) usually form due to strong UV exposure and can result in benign changes in the skin (e.g. actinic keratosis). Malignant changes are mostly carcinoma (skin cancer) which need to be removed surgically. Malignant tumours can originate in both the main nasal cavity and the sinuses and in the advanced stage often cause restriction of one side of breathing or nose bleeds.