What is septoplasty?
A septoplasty (or functional rhinoplasty) is a procedure used to correct breathing problems from a deviated or crooked septum. A deviated septum can be present from birth or result from a traumatic injury. Either way, it can block the passage of air and limit your ability to breath through your nose.
Who is a candidate for a septoplasty?
A deviated septum can create problems that are subtle as well as more obvious signs. Difficulty breathing through your nose, particularly on one side, is common. You may feel like you are always congested. Snoring may also result and disrupt your sleep schedule. In some cases, the deviated septum can potentially interfere with sinus function and sinus infections may result. Dr. Sailon will examine you carefully and see if you are a candidate for this procedure.
HOW DOES A SEPTOPLASTY WORK?
During a septoplasty, Dr. Sailon removes portions of the deviated or crooked septal cartilage and brings the rest back midline to allow easy airflow through both nostrils. The procedure is performed through small incisions inside your nose. A septoplasty by itself does not alter the shape of the nose. It can, however, be combined with a rhinoplasty to allow for Dr. Sailon to make cosmetic refinements to the outside of your nose, if you wish.
Dr. Sailon will also assess your nose before surgery to see if there are additional causes of blockage in your nasal breathing. The turbinates, or outer wall of the nose, can be too large and contribute to limiting airflow. The nasal valves may also be collapsed or to tight, making it hard to breathe. All these issues can be addressed with a septoplasty.
After you have recovered from surgery, you will likely notice easier breathing through your nose. You may snore less. It is also possible your sense of smell and taste will be heightened.
RECOVERY FROM SEPTOPLASTY
A septoplasty is a fairly quick procedure (about one hour) with minimal recovery. There should not be swelling or bruising on the outside of your face. The procedure is performed under anesthesia in an operating room for your comfort. You will go home shortly afterward. Dr. Sailon goes to great length to ensure you are comfortable during your recovery. Small nasal splints may be placed inside your nose and are removed one week after surgery. Most take one week off from work but some may be able to return sooner.