Understanding Septoplasty for Deviated Septum
A deviated septum is a displacement of the wall separating the nostrils. The septum directs airflow and supports the nose structure made of cartilage and bone. Deviated septum occurs when the bone or cartilage becomes crooked. Correcting this deviation through surgery is called septoplasty.
Why Perform Septoplasty?
Other names for this procedure include septal reconstruction and submucous resection of the septum. Reasons to undergo septoplasty include treating chronic sinusitis, bleeding, inflammation, or sleep apnea. It may also remove nasal polyps.
Before surgery, the surgeon may examine the nasal passages with an endoscope. The patient receives general or local anesthesia, and the procedure takes 60-90 minutes. The surgeon works through the nostrils to separate the mucosa from underlying bone and cartilage. The bent cartilage gets reshaped and straightened, then the mucosa gets replaced. Septoplasty can be done as outpatient surgery.
After septoplasty, a nasal splint or pack may be inserted to prevent bleeding and keep the septum straight. The ENT surgeon provides crucial follow-up instructions to follow precisely. For example, the patient should avoid nose blowing or closed-mouth sneezing to prevent pressure changes. Swelling and pain subside within 1-2 weeks.
Risks of Septoplasty
Like any surgery, septoplasty risks include anesthesia reactions, infection, and bleeding. The doctor discusses these beforehand. Proper post-op care reduces risks of complications.