Our plastic surgeons frequently consult with patients who are concerned that a deviated septum may be impeding their ability to breathe properly. Many people have a deviated septum, but suffer no ill health effects; however, when a deviated septum is impairing your overall health, your doctor may recommend that you undergo surgery. Septoplasty, the name for the surgical procedure performed to straighten a deviated septum, is a relatively safe procedure that can effectively improve your overall respiratory function.
The nasal septum is the partition that separates the two nasal cavities. When the septum deviates to one side more than another, the affected nasal cavity becomes narrower and airflow through the nose may be obstructed. A deviated septum is a common result of injury to the nose and may occur from an accident or sports injury. Other people are born with deviated septa. Symptoms of a deviated septum include difficulty breathing through the nose, frequent sinus infections, facial pain, nosebleeds, and snoring. At night, when we rest in a prone position, airflow is further restricted through the nose, especially in those with a deviated septum. In some cases, a deviated septum may even result in sleep apnea, which causes the patient to awake frequently throughout the night. As proper sleep at night is critical to our health and ability to function, snoring and sleep apnea are medical problems that must be addressed. If you are concerned about your ability to breathe through your nose, please make an appointment with us today.
During your examination, our plastic surgeon will used advanced tools to see inside of your nose and determine if you are suffering from a deviated septum. Difficulties breathing through the nose may be the result of a variety of conditions, so it is important to get an accurate diagnosis before considering surgery. The only way to correct a deviated septum is through surgery – there are no medications that can correct this functional issue. The plastic surgery will be performed under local or general anesthesia, depending on the extent of revisions required. Our plastic surgeon will use specifically design medical instruments to straighten the nasal septum by repositioning and/or trimming the cartilage and bones within the nasal cavity. The procedure does not involve breaking the nose, but rather correcting and straightening the nasal septum to improve airflow.
After the surgery, you should plan to spend some time recovering at home. You will need to avoid certain activities, such as strenuous physical exercise and blowing your nose, for several weeks. Your doctor will provide you will a list of guidelines to aid your recovery process – adherence to these guidelines will help you recover more comfortably and minimize the risk of complications. Most people report that their septoplasty has significantly improved their ability to breathe through the nose and has reduced nighttime snoring. You should not expect to experience the results of your septoplasty immediately, as your body will need time to recover from the surgery before the results can be realized. Breathing should be improved within several months, but it may take up to 1 year to experience the full results of your septoplasty.
If you are concerned that a deviated septum may be interfering with your overall health, contact us today to schedule a consultation with one of our plastic surgeons. Our offices are conveniently located to serve patients from Queens, Long Island, New York City, Bergen County, NJ and other surrounding areas.