Septoplasty is a very common procedure performed to correct a “deviated septum” and improve the nasal airway.
Who is a good candidate?
- Difficulty breathing through the nose
- Evidence of a deviated septum on physical exam. Our facial plastic surgeon, Dr. Jess Prischmann, often uses a specialized endoscope to visualize the septum in the office prior to recommending a septoplasty.
- Control of other factors causing nasal obstruction (specifically, allergies). A septoplasty does not cure allergic symptoms in the nose.
How is the procedure performed?
Septoplasty is performed in the operating room under general anesthesia. The procedure takes approximately one hour. An incision is made on the inside of the nose and the entire procedure is performed through this incision. No external changes to the nose are expected as a result of the procedure.
The procedure is considered “outpatient surgery,” which means that patients rest at home after surgery. The day after surgery, Dr. Prischmann sees patients in her office and explains the cleaning process. Downtime from work or school is approximately one week. Because the surgery is inside the nose, no external swelling or bruising is expected after the procedure.
Dr. Prischmann feels that septoplasty is not a painful procedure. Patients may feel soreness, pressure, and stuffiness for several weeks after surgery. One of the reasons why septoplasty is not very painful is because Dr. Prischmann likes to avoid placing packing or splints in the nose unless absolutely necessary.
Because Dr. Prischmann is board certified in otolaryngology, she can combine septoplasty with procedures to reduce the size of the nasal turbinates when indicated. However, Dr. Prischmann feels that reduction of nasal turbinates carries risk, and for that reason, does not perform turbinate reduction unless necessary.
What is the downtime?
Downtime from work or school is approximately one week. During this time, patients are placed on a comprehensive nasal hygiene regimen and physical activities are restricted. Stuffiness and some minor crusting of the nose can be expected for up to six weeks after surgery. It is crucial that patients not pick any scabs in the nose after surgery. This is because aggressive cleaning or picking can result in septal perforation after surgery.
Please contact Dr. Jess Prischmann for more information on septoplasty. Our facial plastic surgeon will be happy to meet with you for a confidential consultation to discuss how this procedure can help you meet your needs.