A Deviated Septum Needs Correction
Septoplasty is a corrective surgical procedure that is designed to straighten out a deviated septum. The septum refers to the wall of cartilage and bone that divides your nostrils. A crooked septum can cause breathing problems and lead to sleep apnea.
During a septoplasty, the surgeon will straighten out and reposition the septum. Before planning for a septoplasty, the surgeon will make a careful assessment of the clinical signs – like breathing difficulties – as well as the shape of your nose.
Preparing for the Procedure
Before you schedule a date for the surgery, you will need to meet with your surgeon and discuss your medical history. The surgeon will ask you about past and present medical conditions, as well as which medications you are on, if any. He will then conduct a thorough physical exam and order blood tests to see if there is any underlying medical condition that needs to be treated before you go ahead with the surgery. The skin on the inside and outside of your nose will also be examined.
Either the surgeon or the assistant will take photographs of your nose from as many angles as possible. These will be used for reference during the surgery. Aspirin and other anti-inflammatories can lead to bleeding, so it is best to avoid taking them starting at least a couple of weeks before the surgery.
The surgery requires general or local anesthesia, depending on the complexity of the surgery and the preferences of the surgeon. In both cases, it will be monitored by a certified anesthesiologist, who will carefully monitor your vitals to make sure that you are doing fine.
The incisions for this procedure are made on the inside of your nose. In rare cases, incisions are made on the columella, the outer tissue structure between the nostrils. The surgeon will straighten the deviated septum by trimming, moving, and/or replacing bone or cartilage. If the nasal bone is severely crooked and completely pushes the septum off to one side, then it might be necessary to make careful cuts in the bone to reposition it.
Once the procedure is complete, the incisions are closed up with the help of dissolvable sutures. The surgeon might also insert silicone splints inside the nostril to provide more support to the septum. He will also place a bandage on your nose to prevent any bleeding.
The Healing Period
Once the surgery is over, you will be taken to a recovery room, where the staff will monitor you for any complications. Since the procedure is performed on an outpatient basis, you will get to go home the very same day.
For the first few weeks after the surgery, avoid any strenuous activity, such as jogging and aerobics, as they can increase your blood pressure and end up causing a nosebleed. Don’t blow your nose too hard, and make sure that your head stays elevated when you sleep. Once your incisions fully heal, you can resume all normal activities.
Contact Us for an Appointment
Arrange an appointment for a septoplasty consultation with Dr. Andrew Compton, an experienced facial plastic and reconstructive surgeon. Dr. Compton will be happy to answer your questions regarding the procedure.