Is it Important to Fix a Deviated Septum?
- Posted on: Sep 23 2020
The septum is the divider that separates the right and left nasal cavities. In fact, the word septum comes from the Greek word for divider.
This structure is simple in design as it has a lining on each side and thin eggshell bone and cartilage in the middle layer.
As the nose grows during puberty any small previous injury can make the septum grow crooked. This will mean that it leans into one nasal airway or the other or in some circumstances in both airways.
This deviated septum may be visible if it’s at the entrance to the nose or entirely non-visible is it is in the deeper portion.
The presence of a deviated septum doesn’t necessarily matter unless it causes symptoms.
Common symptoms of a deviated septum include:
- Difficulty breathing through the nose.
- Mouth breathing during sleep or exercise.
- Sleep apnea.
- Sinus pressure and headaches.
- Recurring sinus infections.
- Chronic postnasal drip.
- A runny nose.
- Allergy complaints.
Patients with these complaints that have a deviated septum will frequently find that medical treatments such as allergy medicines do not entirely resolve their complaints.
In our office, we can do a sophisticated painless evaluation using a video camera in the nose as well as a miniCT scan to fully evaluate if a deviated septum is present, to what degree, and if there are associated issues such as polyps and sinus infection.
Myth: A septoplasty is painful and requires a lot of down-time.
Despite what you may have been told or read, the correction of a deviated septum and any associated sinus issues is no longer a big deal in terms of recovery.
In our office, a 15-minute office procedure under IV sedation resolves this issue permanently. Our modern techniques mean there is no need for packing, splinting, gauze in the nose, or any bruising. Most patients require no pain medicine and can work the next day.
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