Nasal Septal Operation (Septoplasty)

Nasal septal reconstruction, or septoplasty, is required where the central cartilage wall dividing the nostrils is twisted or buckled. This condition may have been caused by past injury or even pressure on the nose during birth.

In this diagram, the septum is in the midline and there is an equal air passage on each side of the nose.
Normal nasal airway

The bend of the nasal septal cartilege to the left has caused a reduced airflow on the left side of the nose and affected nasal breathing ability.
Blocked left nasal airway

Septoplasty surgery to correct deviation of the nasal septum is performed through the nostrils without external incision. In the operation the nasal mucosa (or lining tissue) is separated from the midline nasal cartilage. The cartilage is then surgically remodelled to allow it to sit as closely as possibly to the midline of the nose and provide an equal passage of air on both sides. The mucosa is reattached to the cartilage with dissolving sutures.

Septoplasty is carried out in hospital or a Day Surgery with the patient normally going home on the same day. The procedure generally takes half an hour. Any minor discomfort following surgery is readily settled by paracetamol tablets (Panadol). The only awkward symptom after surgery is nasal stuffiness which lasts for approximately one week. This time is usually spent away from work.

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