Sarcoidosis is a chronic granulomatous disease of unclear etiology with a propensity to involve the lower respiratory tract, but may also involve the upper respiratory tract. Histologically, it is characterized by non-caseating granulomas of various organ systems. Although nasal and sinus involvement is uncommon, patients with sarcoidosis presenting with nasal and sinus complaints may have sinonasal sarcoidosis or simply rhinosinusitis. We reviewed the cases of six patients with pulmonary sarcoidosis who developed chronic sinonasal disease. All six patients had intranasal findings consistent with sinonasal sarcoidosis, but only four had histologic evidence of sinonasal sarcoidosis. These four patients continue to require extensive therapy including topical steroids, systemic steroids, intralesional steroid injections, and nasal irrigations. We conclude that patients with histologically proven sinonasal sarcoidosis present a significant therapeutic challenge because their symptoms and physical findings are often persistent despite aggressive medical and surgical therapy. Their recalcitrant sinonasal disease is thought to result from the destruction of cilia and mucus-producing glands by the granulomatous process.
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