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May 1987

Steroid-Dependent Anosmia

Author Affiliations
From the Rocky Mountain Taste and Smell Center, Departments of Otolaryngology (Dr Jafek and Mr Jafek) and Cellular and Structural Biology (Dr Moran, Ms Eller, and Mr Rowley), University of Colorado School of Medicine, Denver.
Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1987;113(5):547-549. doi:10.1001/archotol.1987.01860050093023

• In steroid-dependent anosmia (nasal polyps, inhalant allergy, anosmia), high doses of steroids will temporarily restore the sense of smell, a diagnostic test. Appropriate surgery can then be carried out, followed by low-dose, long-term steroid therapy to maintain the sense of smell. Olfactory biopsy specimens taken during the course of evaluation and treatment show electron-optically normal olfactory receptors, meaning that the probable pathogenesis of the sensory deficit is an obstruction, mechanical and possibly biochemical. Two cases of steroid-dependent anosmia are presented to detail a fully reversible anosmia using state-of-the-art techniques.

(Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg 1987;113:547-549)