We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.

Advertiser Disclosure

Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

How We Make Money

We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently from our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What Is Melkersson Rosenthal Syndrome?

By Jillian O Keeffe
Updated May 17, 2024
Our promise to you
WiseGeek is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At WiseGeek, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

Melkersson Rosenthal syndrome is a medical condition that has no known cause. This disease affects the nervous system and causes paralysis of muscles in the face, among other symptoms. Although genetics might play a role in the condition, it often occurs in sufferers of Crohn's disease or sarcoidosis.

People who have Melkersson Rosenthal syndrome typically first experience problems as a child or as a young teenager. The muscles of the face become paralyzed, and swelling occurs in facial tissue — the upper lip, in particular. The tongue can become ridged and develop folds.

"Scrotal tongue" is another term for this ridged tongue condition. If the tongue surface is deeply grooved, acid or spice in foods might give the tongue a feeling of burning. With extreme cases that have very deep ridges, infection can occur, or food can become stuck. The person's breath might smell bad as a result.

Usually, these symptoms resolve themselves, but another attack could occur. Repeated swelling over the span of new attacks might become permanent. With time, the swelling also can get worse and more obvious. The affected lip can develop ridges and an unusual brownish coloring and might be hard to the touch.

Although Melkersson Rosenthal syndrome is not curable, the symptoms of the disease can be controlled using drugs. The swelling of the face can be improved through steroids and other medications that reduce inflammation. Treatments such as tissue massage or electrotherapy might also benefit the appearance of the face. Surgery on the affected nerves and inflamed tissue is possible — and sometimes prescribed — but the benefits of this surgery had not been proved as of 2011.

This syndrome is associated with the presence of other diseases. These diseases are autoimmune, which means that they are caused by the body attacking its own cells. Crohn's disease is one such condition. It is a digestive disorder in which the lining of the intestines is inflamed, problems in producing stools happen, and various issues such as inflammation of the liver or even of the eye can occur.

Sarcoidosis is another autoimmune condition in which various parts of the body, such as the lymph nodes or the lungs, become swollen. Both of these conditions might display Melkersson Rosenthal syndrome as part of the symptoms. The underlying reasons for the symptoms of Melkersson Rosenthal syndrome were unknown as of 2011. Particular gene types might, however, dictate who develops Melkersson Rosenthal syndrome and who doesn't.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.

Discussion Comments

WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.