Respiratory scleroma (often termed ‘rhinoscleroma’) is a chronic inflammatory condition in which deforming masses of tissue distend the nasal cavity. Klebsiella rhinoscleromatis is the causative agent of this infection and the Mikulicz cell is specific to the lesion being a large macrophage with clear cytoplasm containing the bacilli.
Antibiotic therapy has traditionally consisted of streptomycin and tetracycline long-term but this presents problems with adverse side-effects and poor patient compliance.
We report on a young patient with nasal rhinoscleroma who achieved resolution after treatment with oral ciprofloxacin. As mentioned in a review of patients with rhinoscleroma at the Mayo clinic in 1993, the fluoroquinolones deserve further study as potentially highly effective agents for this condition. Ciprofloxacin is convenient for oral administration and has few adverse effects. It achieves good tissue penetration, is concentrated in macrophages and may prove to be useful in the therapy of rhinoscleroma.