Melkersson-Rosenthal syndrome is an uncommon disorder of the nerves that can be characterized by recurring facial paralysis, swelling of the face and lips and development of folds and furrows in the tongue. The disorder begins in childhood or early adolescence. After attacks become common, swelling may become persistent and increase eventually. The lip may become hard, cracked and fissured with a reddish-brown discoloration. Although the cause of Melkersson-Rosenthal syndrome is yet to be known but, it can be due to a genetic predisposition. It can be symptomatic of Crohn’s disease or sarcoidosis.
The treatment for Melkersson-Rosenthal syndrome may include medication therapies with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and corticosteroids which can reduce swelling. A patient may be recommended to undergo a surgery to relieve the pressure on the facial nerves to decrease swollen tissue. The effectiveness of surgery has not been established though.
Melkersson-Rosenthal syndrome may recur every now-and-then after its first appearance. It can also become a chronic disorder. A follow-up care should exclude the development of Crohn’s disease or sarcoidosis.
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