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Gustatory rhinitis

Georgalas, Christosa; Jovancevic, Ljiljanab

Current Opinion in Otolaryngology & Head and Neck Surgery: February 2012 - Volume 20 - Issue 1 - p 9–14
doi: 10.1097/MOO.0b013e32834dfb52

Purpose of review This review aims to characterize gustatory rhinitis using recent advances in pathophysiology and novel surgical and medical management strategies.

Recent findings A significant amount of research has recently focused on the role of capsaicin and its receptors (TRPV1 and VR1), which can be found on sensory c-fibers in human nasal mucosa and play a critical role in the development of nasal hyperresponsiveness to environmental factors. Blocking the nasal sensory nerve stimulation (via the use of capsaicin desensitization) or outgoing parasympathetic innervation (via endoscopic Vidian neurectomy) may control nasal hyperresponsiveness and therefore prevent the induction of rhinitis symptoms.

Summary Gustatory rhinitis is a conspicuous type of food-associated rhinorrhea, which can occasionally be associated with significant quality-of-life impairment. It results from an abnormal gustatory reflex associated with a hyperactive, nonadrenergic, noncholinergic, or peptidergic neural system. The use of nasal ipratropium bromide may be effective, if avoidance is not possible or successful. We have had excellent results with the use of intranasal capsaicin or endoscopic vidian neurectomy (including removal of 4–5 mm of the nerve between pterygopalatine fossa and the sphenoid floor) in patients with nonallergic rhinitis, and these could potentially be used as a last resort in patients with intractable gustatory rhinitis.

aEndoscopic Skull Base Amsterdam (ESA), Academic Medical Centre, University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam, The Netherlands

bClinical Centre of Vojvodina, ENT Clinic, Novi Sad, Serbia

Correspondence to Christos Georgalas, PhD, DLO, FRCS(ORL-HNS), Director, Endoscopic Skull Base Amsterdam (ESA), Academic Medical Centre, University of Amsterdam (, A2-228, Meiberdgreef 9, 1105AZ, Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Tel: +31 20 566 6350; e-mail:

© 2012 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.