Swelling of the nose (rhinophyma)

What is swelling of the nose?

Rhinophyma is a swelling of the nose. If the condition progresses, the nose becomes increasingly redder, swollen at the end and gains a bumpy surface which changes the noses shape.

The swelling is because there is formation of scar-like tissue, and the glands that produce oil on the skin (sebaceous glands) get bigger. Much more rarely, swellings can arise on other parts of the face such as the ears and chin.

The condition is mainly seen in those who have a rash that can affect the cheeks, forehead and nose (rosacea). Nose swelling and redness usually only develops in rosacea which has been active for many years.

There is no cure for rhinophyma, although some non-surgical treatments are available for rosacea to help control it. These may include laser and intense pulsed light (IPL) treatment, oral medications and topical gels.

Not normally funded treatment or procedure:

Surgical treatment of swelling of the nose (rhinophyma) is not normally funded by the NHS. This is because this treatment is considered to be a cosmetic procedure.

The clinician in charge of the care of the patient’s specific condition, usually a hospital doctor, can assist the application, if there is exceptional clinical need for the treatment to be funded. The patient’s clinician must evidence clinical exceptionality and must be supported by the patient’s local NHS commissioning organisation.

See separate leaflet for more information on Individual Funding Requests (IFRs). 

Advice and further guidance:

  • For more information search for ‘rosacea’ at www.nhs.uk
  • Choosing Wisely UK is part of a global initiative aimed at improving conversations between patients and their doctors and nurses.

Treatment policy for patients covered by NHS Birmingham and Solihull CCG

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