What is chondrodermatitis nodularis?

This is a painful nodule that forms on the ear pinna (ear flap). Chondrodermatitis nodularis is also called Winkler's disease. It is commoner in men and those who work outdoors.

There are two main types. Chondrodermatitis nodularis helicis and Chondrodermatitis nodularis antihelicis depending on where the nodule is on the ear flap.

What causes chondrodermatitis nodularis?

An exact cause is unknown. However, excessive cold weather, repeated trauma to the ear, repeated pressure to the ear (e.g. frequent telephone users) and men who work outdoors have been shown to have a higher risk of developing these nodules.

What are the symptoms?

  • A single red, painful nodule usually on the top most part of the ear flap

How can chondrodermatitis nodularis be treated?

  • Pressure relieving devices (A cube with hollow centre to relieve pressure on ear during sleeping / avoiding sleeping on the affected side)
  • Cryotherapy (freeze with liquid nitrogen)
  • Surgery to remove the nodule - Deep shave

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