BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Medical Policy Manual

Rhinomanometry and Acoustic Rhinometry


Rhinomanometry measures air pressure and the rate of airflow in the nasal airway during respiration. These measurements are then used to calculate nasal airway resistance. Rhinomanometry is intended to be an objective quantification of nasal airway patency.

Acoustic rhinometry is a technique used to assess the geometry of the nasal cavity and nasopharynx and for evaluating nasal obstruction. The technique is based on an analysis of sound waves reflected from the nasal cavities.

Both techniques are proposed for use in comparing decongestive action of antihistamines and corticosteroids. These techniques are also proposed for assessment of an individual prior to or following nasal surgery. Testing is generally done in an outpatient setting.




Published scientific evidence in the form of well-designed studies in peer review journals is lacking regarding the utilization of rhinomanometry and acoustic rhinometry in clinical management. There is no evidence that these techniques are more clinically relevant or accurate compared to self-assessment and self-reporting.


American Academy of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery. (2015.) Clinical practice guideline: allergic rhinitis. Retrieved May 25, 2018 from

Bhatia, D., Palesy, T., Ramli, R., Barham, H., Christensen, J., Gunaratne, D., et al. (2016). Two-dimensional assessment of the nasal valve area cannot predict minimum cross-sectional area or airflow resistance. American Journal of Rhinology & Allergy, 30 (3), 190-194. Abstract retrieved July 3, 2016 from PubMed database.

Hsu, H., Tan, C., Chang, C., Chu, C., Chiu, Y., Pan, C., & Huang, H. (2016). Evaluation of nasal patency by VAS/NOSE questionnaires and anterior active rhinomanometry after septoplasty: a retrospective one-year follow-up cohort study. Clinical Otolaryngology, 2016 Apr 22, doi: 10.0000/coa.12662 [Epub ahead of print]. Abstract retrieved August 3, 2016 from PubMed database.

Hueto, J., Santaolalla, F., Sanchez-Del-Rey, A., & Martinez-Ibargüen, A. (2016). Usefulness of rhinomanometry in the identification and treatment of patients with obstructive sleep apnoea: an algorithm for predicting the relationship between nasal resistance and continuous positive airway pressure: A retrospective study. Clinical Otolaryngology, 2016 Feb 29. Doi: 10.1111/coa.12639. [Epub ahead of print]. Abstract retrieved August 3, 2016 from PubMed database.

Tekin, K., Kara, M., Güҫlü, O., Erdoğan, H., & Dereköy, F. (2016). Prognostic value of acoustic rhinometry and rhinomanometry in tympanoplasty surgery. The Journal of International Advanced Otology, 12 (1), 32-36. (Level 4 evidence)

U. S. Food and Drug Administration. (2002, October). Center for Devices and Radiological Health. 510(k) Premarket Notification Database. K022311. Retrieved November 9, 2011 from

U. S. Food and Drug Administration. (2010, April). Center for Devices and Radiological Health. 510(k) Premarket Notification Database. K092611. Retrieved November 10, 2011 from

Wandalsen, G., Mendes, A., Matsumoto, F., & Solè, D. (2016). Acoustic rhinometry in nasal provocation tests in children and adolescents. Journal of Investigational Allergology & Clinical Immunology, 26 (3), 156-160. Abstract retrieved August 3, 2016 from PubMed database.




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