Septum Deviation and Septoplasty

Septum Deviation and Septoplasty

The nasal septum is the anatomical structure in the inner part of the nose that divides the nose into two compartments in the midline. The nasal septum is composed partly of bone and mainly of cartilage. Under normal conditions, it is necessary to divide the nose into two equal parts so that breathing from both nostrils can occur evenly. However, in nearly 70-80% of people, there is a deviation of the nasal septum that is structural or develops over time due to trauma. These patients are diagnosed with a ‘deviated septum’. The surgery performed to correct these deviations is called ‘septoplasty’.

Not every deviation of the nasal septum is operated. Septoplasty is required when the deviated septum is associated with symptoms such as nasal congestion, difficulty breathing through the nose, snoring, recurrent nosebleeds, frequent sinusitis, persistent nasal discharge, or chronic headaches.

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With a simple septoplasty, there is no swelling on the face, no bruising around the eyes, no swelling, and no incision marks on the face. With a simple incision through the nose, the nasal septum itself is accessed under the mucosa covering the nose, any abnormalities found are corrected, and the bone eminentia is filed or removed if necessary. Since the nasal dorsum is not interfered with, you will not have swelling or bruising in this area, which can sometimes occur during ‘rhinoplasty’, or aesthetic correction of the nose. In rare cases, especially with very advanced deviations in the front part of the nose, it may be necessary to intervene on the tip of the nose with incisions from the lower tip of the nose that cannot be seen from the outside. This technique is called ‘open septoplasty’ technique.

After septoplasty surgery, a nasal tampon may be used that lasts for 1 or at most 2 days. However, nowadays these tampons are soft and easy to remove. In fact, new generation tampons are often used that are made of plastic, have holes to allow breathing through the nose, or can dissolve themselves. In some cases, the operation can be completed without tampons by suturing the nose, which dissolve by themselves.

There are no sutures that need to be removed after surgery. All sutures are inside the nose and dissolve by themselves.

Oral nutrition is not started until an average of 3 hours after general anesthesia.

It is normal for blood to occasionally flow from the nostrils or nasal passages into the mouth after surgery. Even if it is not very bad, you may have mild pain. In this case, you can use the painkillers that I will recommend. Sometimes there may be a loss of sensation in the area of the front upper teeth and palate, but this will return to normal over time.

I recommend eating warm and liquid food on the first day after the anesthesia, but in the following period I often do not make any restrictions on the diet.

During the recovery period, I recommend sleeping on a high pillow and on your back.

Scabbing may occur in the nose. For this, I recommend nasal rinses (with normal saline or ocean water) to my patients. Please do not try to clean them by hand, as you may cause an infection. At the same time, I recommend that you avoid being in very dry environments and humidify your room with cool humidifiers if possible.

You should avoid vigorous blowing for about 1 week to 10 days, as this can cause unwanted bleeding. If you must sneeze, keep your mouth open to avoid excessive pressure in your nose and prevent the risk of bleeding. You need to protect your nose from trauma. Intense and heavy exercise should be avoided for the first 4 weeks.

There is no harm in taking a bath, but it should be a warm bath, because a hot bath can cause nosebleeds.

There is no harm in wearing glasses.

Recovery time varies from person to person. The average recovery time is between 1-4 weeks, but often patients can resume their normal life and go to work as early as the 2nd day after surgery.

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