Septoplasty is an invasive procedure to correct a deviated nasal septum - a dislocation of the bone and cartilage that separates two nostrils. During septoplasty, your surgeon will straighten and reposition nasal septum in the middle of your nose. He may cut or remove some parts of your septum before reinserting them in the proper position.
Before a septoplasty procedure, your surgeon will consider symptoms such as breathing difficulties, structure and features of your nose. For the best outcome, it is wise to consult with your surgeon about how septoplasty can help you.
Why septoplasty procedure is done?
It’s very common to have some sort of deviation of the septum. However, if the deviation of the septum is severe, it can block one side of your nose and lead to breathing difficulties through one or both sides of your nose.
The extra exposure of a deviated septum to the drying effect of airflow through the nose may sometimes lead to bleeding in certain patients. Septoplasty procedure corrects the nasal septum by trimming, repositioning and replacing cartilage, bone or both.
You may consider a septoplasty procedure if you are finding it difficult to breathe through your nose, thus affecting the quality of life.
Risks involved with a septoplasty procedure
As with any major surgery, a septoplasty procedure has certain risks including bleeding, infection and a reaction to anaesthesia. Other risks may include:
How to prepare for a septoplasty procedure?
- Despite surgery, symptoms such as nasal obstruction may reappear
- Excessive bleeding
- Shape of your nose may change
- Septal perforation
- Sense of smell may decrease
- Collection of blood in the nasal space
- A numbing sensation in the upper gum or teeth
Before a septoplasty procedure, you may need to perform the following activities:
What to expect after a septoplasty procedure?
- Avoid medicines such as aspirin or ibuprofen for a minimum of two weeks before and after surgery. These medications may increase bleeding.
- Stop smoking immediately as it slows the healing process after surgery.
- For the first 24 hours after administering anaesthesia, you may have lapses of memory, slowed reaction time and impaired judgement. Make sure to have someone take you home.
In order to minimise the chances of bleeding and swelling, your surgeon
may want you to follow certain precautions for several weeks after surgery. They are:
Results of a septoplasty procedure
- For starters, don’t get involved in rigorous activities such as aerobics and jogging. Physical exercises may increase the blood pressure which may cause the nose to bleed.
- Don’t blow your nose.
- Put a pillow under your head while sleeping.
- Wear clothes that fasten in the front.
Though results are most often stable, cartilage and tissue may gradually move or reshape over time. The nasal tissues stabilise by three to six months after surgery. However, some changes can still occur for up to a year or more after surgery.
90% of the patients who have had septoplasty report that their symptoms like difficulty breathing
caused by a deviated septum have immensely improved.