Rhinosporidiosis: An unusual presentation

July 13, 2014
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Rhinosporidiosis is a chronic granulomatous disease that primarily affects the mucous membranes of the nose and nasopharynx. It is caused by Rhinosporidium seeberi. Clinically it presents as a reddish, bleeding, polypoid mass with a characteristic strawberry-like appearance on its surface, which is caused by the presence of mature sporangia. In the case described here, a 35-year-old man presented with a 6-month history of a slowly growing polypoid mass in his left nasal cavity. The surface of the mass was smooth, pale, and covered with nasal mucosa. It was attached to the nasal septum. Fine-needle aspiration cytology was suggestive of a parasitic cyst. The mass was excised with the use of local anesthesia. Histopathologic examination of the resected specimen revealed rhinosporidiosis. Prior to this diagnosis, the patient had not exhibited most of the typical clinical features that are suggestive of rhinosporidiosis. In the case of a nasal mass, a diagnosis of rhinosporidiosis is important to establish prior to any surgery because bleeding during and after surgery is usually profuse and can be life-threatening. The site of the excised mass should be cauterized to prevent recurrence.


Rhinosporidiosis is a chronic granulomatous lesion that is caused by Rhinosporidium seeberi, a fungus of the class Phycomycetes, family Coccoidiodaceae.1 This disease is endemic in India and Sri Lanka, but it is rarely found in other parts of world other than in individuals who have migrated from endemic areas.2

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