If you have trouble breathing through your nose, you may have a deviated septum. A deviated septum is a condition where the bone and cartilage that divide your nostrils are crooked or off-center. This can cause one or both of your nasal passages to be narrow or blocked, making it hard for air to flow normally. A deviated septum can also increase your risk of sinus infections, nosebleeds, snoring, and sleep apnea.
One way to treat a deviated septum is with a surgical procedure called rhinoplasty. Rhinoplasty is also known as a nose job or nose reshaping. It is a cosmetic surgery that changes the shape or size of your nose. Some people choose to have rhinoplasty for aesthetic reasons, such as to improve their appearance or self-confidence. Others may have rhinoplasty for medical reasons, such as to correct a birth defect, an injury, or a breathing problem.
A septorhinoplasty is a procedure that both improves your ability to breathe and changes the external appearance of the nose. Septorhinoplasty combines two procedures:
. Septoplasty. Your septum is the cartilage in the middle of your nose, between your nostrils. You have a deviated septum if this cartilage is crooked or misaligned. A deviated septum can make it difficult to breathe properly and can lead to dry mouth, snoring, and other complications. A septorhinoplasty corrects this problem by repositioning and straightening your septum.
. Rhinoplasty. This is a surgical procedure that changes the external shape of the nose. Rhinoplasty involves removing and reshaping part of the bones and cartilage of the nose.
A septorhinoplasty improves the function of your nose by removing or reshaping the parts of your septum that are deviated. The exact technique for your septorhinoplasty will depend on your surgeon and what is to be corrected or changed.
During a septorhinoplasty, you’re unconscious and fully sedated. The surgeon makes a cut from inside the nose and gently lifts the cartilage and bone in the septum.
The part of the cartilage that causes any deviation is removed or reshaped and any other structures that affect breathing, such as the nasal turbinates may be addressed as well. The remaining bone and tissue are put back in place and into a straight position.
While the incision is still open, the surgeon may also:
. reshape the cartilage at the tip of the nose
. shave areas of bone to remove a hump
. break and reset the nasal bones to correct any deviation and improve the appearance of the nose
The surgeon then closes the incision and packs the nose with gauze to help stop bleeding.
You might have splits or soft plastic sheets placed inside your nose to help your septum heal straight. In most cases, you can go home once the anesthesia wears off. If there are splints or packing, the surgeon will remove this in the office at an appointment following surgery.
All surgeries carry some risks. The possible risks of a septorhinoplasty include:
. excess bleeding
. a change to the shape of your nose
. a hole in your septum
. a blood clot in your nose
. decreased sense of smell
. a bad reaction to anesthesia
. temporary numbness in your gums, teeth, or nose
It’s important to tell your surgeon about any medical conditions you have to reduce your risk of complications. Rheumatologic conditions like lupus or osteoarthritis, smoking, and some medications can increase the risk of poor wound healing.
Some people also find that their symptoms don’t improve after a septorhinoplasty. They might need to have additional surgery to relieve symptoms.
People either have a deviated septum at birth or as a result of an injury. Some people will sustain a birth injury and believe they were born with it. If someone in the family has a deviated septum, it is more likely that it was inherited rather than caused by a birth injury.
Injuries to the nose, which can result in a deviated septum, are frequently traumatic blows to the face. Contact sports, such as football and wrestling, are prone to this. Automobile accidents are another cause of a deviated septum.
Age-related changes in the nose can lead to a deviated septum or the worsening of the deviation. Some people may not have noticed any issues early in life but as it worsened with age, they started exhibiting symptoms.
To correct a deviated septum, a septoplasty must be performed. This procedure can take up to 90 minutes to complete. The surgeon will reposition, trim, and straighten the cartilage and bone that comprise the septum during the procedure.
Many people who have septoplasty request rhinoplasty as well, or vice versa. Because the patient is already sedated and the surgeon is performing work on the nose, it makes sense to work on the nose's inner and outer makeup to improve its appearance.
What many people are not aware of is that there is a term for having a septoplasty and rhinoplasty – septorhinoplasty. This is what you can request when interested in having both procedures performed at the same time.
Due to the effects of having a deviated septum, such as nasal congestion, many people do not sleep well at night. They often wake up to blow their nose or even take a breath because they can’t take in enough air through their nose. This can cause daytime fatigue and undereye circles that can seem like bruising under the eyes.
A deviated septum can block one side of the nose, which can make breathing through that side difficult. Some people have such a difficult time breathing that they suffer from sleep apnea. This condition causes a person to stop breathing for seconds throughout the night, causing them to wake up suddenly.
Even without suffering from the inability to breathe, people with a deviated septum may sleep poorly because they can’t stay asleep due to the congestion. It’s like sleeping with a cold that never goes away.
A deviated septum doesn’t directly cause anxiety. Since it’s difficult to sleep at night and dealing with recurrent sinus infection and congestions can be frustrating, many people have anxiety from it. Anxiety is essentially a byproduct of the symptoms people experience who have deviated septums.
Recurring sinus infections or sinusitis is the most common health problem. This is when the sinuses inflame because of excess mucus in the sinus cavity. Symptoms of sinusitis include:
. Discolored Mucus
. Post-Nasal Drip
. Facial Pain
People who suffer from the above symptoms for over 12 weeks have chronic sinusitis. Health problems can also result indirectly from having a deviated septum. For instance, those who have sleep apnea because of their deviated septum are at increased risk of high blood pressure, heart disease, and stroke.
You should not blow your nose for two weeks after a rhinoplasty. However, sneezing is something our bodies do naturally, so it’s nearly impossible to stop it. Sneezing with your mouth wide open will minimize any disruption to the nose.
The full recovery from a deviated septum rhinoplasty takes several weeks. The length of time it takes for the swelling to go down and the ultimate outcomes to become apparent will depend on the specifics of the treatment.
Most patients can go back to work or school a few days after the procedure. Up to three weeks may pass before you can resume regular activities like working out.
You might need to take some precautions to avoid bleeding and swelling in the first few weeks after your surgery. Your surgeon will let you know how many of these things you need to do and for how long. Some common after surgery instructions include:
. Keeping your head elevated while you’re sleeping.
. Avoiding blowing your nose.
. Avoiding jogging and other intense cardiovascular activities.
It will take your nose about 3 to 6 months to stabilize. As your septum stabilizes, you might see changes in your breathing and the shape of your nose. Some people see changes for a year following surgery.
You’ll meet with a surgeon before your surgery to go over your medical history and the expectations you have for your septorhinoplasty. Your doctor’s office will take many images of your nose before surgery. They will also carefully measure your nose and the area around it.
Your surgeon will let you know what they expect your results will be. Once your surgery is scheduled, you’ll be advised to take some steps to prepare.
These will likely include:
. Stopping smoking, if you smoke. Smoking can slow the healing process and increase your risk of complications from surgery.
. Avoiding aspirin and ibuprofen. Aspirin and ibuprofen can increase your risk of bleeding. It’s best to avoid them before and after surgery. Your surgeon will let you know what medications are safe to take.
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For more information about the cost of Rhinoplasty in Iran and to schedule an appointment in advance, you can contact Iranian Surgery consultants via WhatsApp number 0098 901 929 0946. This service is completely free.