Rhinosporidiosis

  • Rhinospoidiosis is a granulomatous disease of the nose caused by Rhinosporidium seeberi
  • R. seeberi was initially thought to be a fungus, but now it is now considered to be an aquatic protistan
  • Rhinosporidiosis is found in India (southern states mostly), Pakistan and Sri Lanka

Etiology

  • There are various theories explaining the etiology of rhinosporidiosis
    • Demellow’s theory of infection – Infection arises from swimming in water bodies frequented by animals
    • Karunarathnae’s theory of auto inoculation – The spread of lesions to skin and conjunctiva occur as a result of auto inoculation
    • Hematogenous spread
    • Lymphatic spread

Clinical features

  • Symptoms
    • epistaxis
    • nasal stuffiness
  • Signs
    • Leafy, polypoidal, pink to pruple mass in nasal cavity, arising from lateral wall or nasal septum, sometimes extending to nasopharynx
    • White dots seen on surface – sporangia
    • Bleeds on touch

Investigations

  • Diagnosis is confirmed by biopsy
  • Biopsy shows sporangia with spores

Treatment

  • Surgical excision with cauterisation of base
  • Care should be taken to ensure complete removal so as to prevent recurrence
  • Medical treatment is not very effective
  • Dapsone has been tried for treatment of rhinosporidiosis

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