Rhinoscopy is a procedure that allows the inner lining (mucosa) of the nose to be examined with the use of a rigid endoscope. During rhinoscopy, the endoscope is gently inserted into each nostril, and advanced into each nasal cavity. The mucosa is examined for disease, which may show up as discoloration, irregularities, polyps, masses or abnormal blood vessels. Abnormalities are biopsied and submitted to a veterinary pathologist for evaluation for cancer, infection and inflammation.
Most patients that need a rhinoscopy first benefit from a CT scan of the nose and sinuses to help localize the specific area and extent of the disease.
Symptoms that your pet may be exhibiting to indicate they may need a rhinoscopy include sneezing, deformed or swollen nose, snoring, congested nose, bloody or other discharge from the nose.
Left: This picture was taken during rhinoscopy in a dog. This image shows normal nasal turbinates (curled bony shelf covered with mucosa within the nasal cavity).
Right: This picture was also taken during rhinoscopy in a dog, but it shows an abnormal growth within the nasal cavity that was biopsied and found to be malignant, or cancerous.