Septoplasty with or without Partial Turbinectomy
The nasal septum is the wall between both nostrils and is made of cartilage and bone. When the septum is crooked or deviated, it can result in nasal breathing obstruction in one or both nostrils. The crooked area of the septum may be a result of trauma (not necessarily a broken nose) or developmental. The inferior turbinates are fleshy structures that contain many venous channels and provide humidification function for the upper and lower respiratory tract. When these structures become enlarged or hypertrophic, they can result in nasal obstruction in one or both nostrils. When these cause persistant nasal obstruction that does not improve with medical therapy, surgical correction can improve nasal breathing and eliminate or dramatically improve the ability to breathe through the nose.
Septoplasty is a procedure whereby the crooked ares of the nasal septum are removed or straightened througha small, one-half to three-quarter inch incision inside the nostril. This surgery is done in order to improve the nasal breathing and DOES NOT change the shape of the nose. There is no post- operative black and blue eyes that can be seen with rhinoplasty or open treatment of nasal fractures. Pain is usually minimal and mainly related to pressure from packing that may or not be needed after surgery. If packing is required, it typically is removed the next morning and is generally, mildly uncomfortable. The average patient can return to normal activity in one week without restrictions.
Partial turbinectomy is a procedure that involves reducing the volume of the inferior turbinates which may have resulted in nasal obstruction. Small incisions are made along the involved turbinates and the underlying tissue that is causing nasal obstruction is partially removed. It is important to realize that these structures have a very important function in humidifying air for the lungs and therefore, they can not be completely removed.
The end result should be significant improvement in nasal breathing, but other factors that can cause congestion may need to be explored. These may include allergy testing or medicines to treat non-allergic rhinitis (nasal congestion and mucus production) that can present with drastic temperature changes, irritation from smoke, chemicals, or exposure to things to which the patient may be allergic.
Tonsillectomy and/or Adenoidectomy