Our ear, nose and throat (ENT) service is provided by a highly skilled team of doctors and a specialist nurse dedicated to delivering high-quality care to adults and children.

The service provides outpatient treatment for symptoms affecting the ear, nose or throat, as well as a range of audiological investigations and rehabilitation for adults. The outpatient service has both routine and specialist clinics, including some nurse-led clinics.

The ENT team investigates and manages hearing loss, dizziness, tinnitus, ear infections and protruding ears — pinnaplasty is offered for the latter. Advanced middle ear surgical procedures are also carried out.

These services are for both adults and children. 

Ear/aural care clinic

Specialist nurse-led aural care clinics are held at the Royal Free Hospital. 

The clinic looks after people with a variety of ear conditions, such as recurrent ear infections, difficult ear wax removals and care of the mastoid cavity (ear canal).

Emergency care clinic

An urgent care clinic runs at Barnet Hospital for patients seen through the accident and emergency department. 

GPs can make referrals through the on-call ENT doctors or can email a referral letter to the department.

The service manages various head and neck conditions involving the nose and post-nasal space, oral cavity, pharynx and larynx, and salivary gland disease. 

Patients are managed in a multidisciplinary team involving oncology, speech and language therapy, dieticians, maxillofacial surgeons, and clinical nurse specialists.

Head and neck cancer

Head and neck cancer services (not including thyroid management) at the Royal Free London are part of the University College London Hospital (UCLH) head and neck cancer network. 

Cancer diagnostics are provided at Barnet Hospital and Chase Farm Hospital. 

Specific surgical services are based at University College Hospital (UCH) and chemotherapy/radiotherapy services are located at both UCH and North Middlesex University Hospital. Patients then return to Chase Farm Hospital for their follow-up appointments.

Patients will have support from the head and neck cancer nurse specialist and our Macmillan cancer information and support services. 

Laryngectomy clinic

A specialist nurse and speech and language therapist-led laryngectomy clinic is held at Barnet Hospital to give help and support to patients who have had laryngectomies.

There is a dedicated service for both adults and children addressing disorders affecting the nose and paranasal sinuses. 

Diseases affecting the nasal cavity and external nose are managed both medically and surgically, and can include congenital and acquired nasal deformity, chronic and acute rhinosinusitis, and nasal allergy.

These conditions are comprehensively assessed, investigated and managed both medically and surgically, including with advanced endoscopic techniques and complex facial plastic surgery for the nose.

Patients can expect to have their surgical procedures completed with minimal disruption as a day case.

Facial plastic surgery

The ENT service is a member of the skin multidisciplinary team and is also a core member of the Royal Free Hospital craniofacial unit. 

There is a comprehensive diagnostic service for ENT conditions in children, such as glue ear and hearing loss, ear discharge, recurrent tonsillitis, nasal discharge, and childhood nose bleeds.

Formal hearing tests can be conducted for children aged four years and above.

The team also works closely with Great Ormond Street Hospital to investigate sleep disordered breathing (sleep apnoea). 

Surgical treatment for general paediatric conditions is provided at Barnet Hospital.

Read more about ear, nose and throat surgery for children.

The service offers comprehensive management of malignant and benign thyroid and parathyroid disease, including thyroid cancer and goitre (a lump or swelling at the front of the neck caused by a swollen thyroid). 

Care is delivered by a team of dedicated endocrinologists, radiologists and oncologists in combined specialty clinics across Chase Farm Hospital, North Middlesex University Hospital and the Royal Free Hospital. Referrals are also taken from the Princess Alexandra Hospital in Harlow.

The team also works within the endocrine surgery team at the Royal Free Hospital, as part of the parathyroid multidisciplinary team, to treat primary hyperparathyroidism, employing advanced imaging techniques to offer minimally invasive, targeted operations.

Operations take place at Barnet Hospital and the Royal Free Hospital.

Referrals from GPs will only be accepted through the e-referral system. 

Referral to the ENT urgent review clinic

Please make sure all referrals to the urgent review clinic are accepted first by our on call ENT team.

Bleep number is noted on the form. Please note any referrals not discussed with our on call team first may be rejected.

Download ENT urgent review clinic referral (Word doc)

Referral to the maxillofacial department

GPs referring patient for suspected head and neck cancer may wish to use the North London Cancer Network suspected head and neck cancer referral form, or the online choose and book system.

Read more about the maxillofacial and orthodontics department.

Here are some websites you may find useful when looking for more information:

•    ENT UK
•    British Association of Endocrine and Thyroid Surgeons 
•    British Society of Head & Neck Imaging 
•    British Association of Head & Neck Oncologists

Please note, the Royal Free London is not responsible for the content of external websites.