Tests and procedures used to diagnose nasal and paranasal tumors include:

  • Using an endoscopic camera to see inside your nasal cavity and sinuses. During a nasal endoscopy, a thin tube with a light and camera on the end is inserted into your nose. The camera sends pictures to a monitor that your doctor uses to look for anything unusual.
  • Collecting a sample of cells for testing. If your doctor finds any abnormalities during a nasal endoscopy, special tools can be used to collect tissue samples. The samples are sent to a lab for testing.
  • Imaging tests to create pictures of your nasal cavity and sinuses. Imaging techniques used to view your nasal cavity and sinuses include a CT scan and MRI.

Your doctor may recommend additional tests and procedures based on your particular condition.


Treatment for nasal and paranasal tumors depends on where your tumor is located and what types of cells are involved. Your health care team will work with you to devise a treatment plan that is best for your particular tumor.


Most nasal and paranasal tumors are treated with surgery to remove the tumor. Surgical options may include:

  • Open surgery. Surgeons may need to make an incision near your nose or in your mouth to access your nasal cavity or sinus. Surgeons remove the tumor and any areas that may be affected, such as nearby bone.
  • Minimally invasive surgery. In certain situations, surgeons may be able to access the tumor using nasal endoscopy and special tools. The tools are inserted through your nose and a tiny camera allows surgeons to perform the operation.

Nasal and paranasal tumors are located near critical structures in your head, such as your brain, eyes and the nerves that control vision. At Mayo Clinic, experienced surgeons perform operations in a way that minimizes damage to these areas, allowing you to continue living life as normally as possible after your surgery.

Mayo Clinic surgeons are highly skilled in minimally invasive surgery techniques, including minimally invasive skull base surgery. They also have extensive experience performing complicated reconstructive operations to restore your ability to eat and speak after surgery.

Radiation therapy

Radiation therapy uses high-powered energy, such as X-rays and Proton therapy, to kill cancer cells. Radiation therapy can be used on its own or after surgery to treat nasal and paranasal tumors.

New technology allows Mayo Clinic radiation oncologists to carefully plan and deliver radiation so that cancer cells are killed and healthy tissue nearby is spared. This reduces the risk of side effects during radiation therapy.


Chemotherapy is a drug treatment that uses chemicals to kill cancer cells. In people with nasal and paranasal tumors, chemotherapy may be used before or after an operation. Chemotherapy may also be used in combination with radiation therapy.

Palliative care

Palliative care is specialized medical care that focuses on providing relief from pain and other symptoms of a serious illness. At Mayo Clinic, palliative care specialists work with you, your family and your other doctors to provide an extra layer of support that complements your ongoing care.

Palliative care is provided by a team of doctors, nurses and other specially trained professionals. Palliative care teams aim to improve the quality of life for people with cancer and their families. This form of care is offered alongside curative or other treatments you may be receiving.