The nostrils are two holes that are separated by the septum, which is a wall of bones and cartilage. It is the wall that separates the nose evenly. It is often than not that people have uneven nostrils, which is caused by uneven septum. In certain severe unevenness of the septum, it is known as a deviated septum.

A deviated septum may cause health complications to a person such as blocked nostril and breathing difficulty. Deviated septum can be present from birth, injury from nose (often from accidents, fighting, sports, etc.). Deviated septum condition can get worse with age.

Other symptoms of a deviated septum are nosebleeds, sinus infections, dryness in the nostril, snoring or breathing loudly causing sleep disruptions, naval congestions or pressure and dry mouth due to breathing by mouth. Facial pain can also be felt in some cases of deviated septum.

How to treat deviated septum?
Septoplasty or open rhinoplasty is a surgical treatment used to fix the deviated septum. It straightens and positions the septum to revise the problem of deviated septum.

About the procedure:
The plastic surgeon will do a thorough assessment on the situation. The time and steps taken to go through the procedure will depend on the severity of the deviated septum.

In a typical procedure, the septum is accessed through a small incision on one side of the nose. From there, the mucous membrane is lifted and the deviated septum will be moved into the right position. After that, the mucous membrane is then repositioned. There will be stitches to hold the repositioned septum and membrane in position. Sometimes, packing the nose with cotton is enough.

Before the procedure, it is recommended to avoid certain medications such as aspirin, ibuprofen and other blood thinning medication to avoid riskof excessive bleeding during surgery.

Does the procedure involve pain?
There will be local anesthesia applied for this procedure; hence pain is not present during the procedure. Swelling, pain and blood will be present after the procedure but medications to control the pain and swelling will be given.

How long will it take recover?
The procedure is done as an outpatient procedure and patients are allowed to go leave after. Several physical activities should be avoided for the next few weeks after the procedure until full recovery regained in about almost a month.

Some tips to recover quickly are:

  • elevating the head at night to keep the swelling down
  • avoid blowing of nose for at least three days post-surgery
  • wear button down shirts instead of having to pull clothing over the head