A deviated septum is a common condition where the wall that separates your nostrils is off-center, causing one nasal passage to be smaller than the other. A severe deviated septum can affect your ability to breathe well and sleep soundly. Our team at Advanced ENT & Allergy Center has over 20 years of experience fixing deviated septums with a septoplasty procedure, helping patients experience long-term relief.
What is a Deviated Septum and How Can I Fix It?
The nasal septum is the wall inside of your nose that separates the right and left nostrils. This wall is made of bone and cartilage, and helps direct air through the organs in the nose which help filter and warm the air before it reaches the lungs.
Ideally, the nasal septum is centered, separating your nasal cavities into two equal passageways. When the septum is off-center or crooked, one nasal passage is larger than the other – this is called a deviated septum. Depending on the severity of this difference, deviated septum symptoms can include:
- Difficulty breathing through one or both sides of the nose
- Nasal congestion
- Frequent sinus infections
- Frequent nosebleeds
- Headaches or facial pain
- Noisy breathing or snoring during sleep
A deviated nasal septum can result from injury or trauma to the nose or it can form at birth or in vetro.
During your consultation, we will examine the inside of your nose to determine the cause of your nasal discomfort. Using a scope, we will look at the back of your nose and diagnose the severity of your condition and can confirm whether or not you have a deviated septum. From here, we can discuss the best path forward for your specific case.
If our experts determine that you have a deviated nasal septum, treatment varies depending on the severity of your condition. We will first focus on managing the symptoms you are experiencing and work to alleviate breathing discomfort. We may recommend medications such as decongestants, antihistamines, or nasal steroid sprays. Nasal medications are very inexpensive, and most can be purchased over-the-counter. These treatments will not fix your deviated septum – they simply help reduce the uncomfortable symptoms. If your symptoms cannot be managed with medications, our doctors may suggest deviated septum surgery, or septoplasty, to correct your nasal septum deviation.
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How is Septoplasty Performed?
Septoplasty is a surgical procedure performed through the nostrils. During nasal septoplasty surgery, your surgeon will remove or re-adjust portions of the crooked septum in order to straighten the septum and relieve airway blockage. This is a routine and relatively short procedure that can be done either in a hospital under general anesthesia, or in the office under local anesthesia. All incisions are made on the inside of the nose and will not affect the way your nose appears on the outside.
Deviated septum surgery success rates are high — 99% of patients have a successful septum deviation septoplasty procedure with no complications, and the majority of patients who undergo septoplasty report a significant improvement in their quality of life. While some people choose not to fix their deviated septum, symptoms may worsen over time — aging can make a deviated septum more obvious and problematic as your nasal structure continues to change.
Deviated septum surgery risks are uncommon but can include anesthesia complications, infection, bleeding, numbness of upper teeth and nose, change in the external shape of the nose, and septal perforation.
Our team at Advanced ENT & Allergy Center has more experience performing in-office septoplasty procedures in Denver, Colorado than any other practice in the area – we have performed thousands of successful septoplasty surgeries to correct nasal septum deviation. During your consultation, we will listen closely to your symptoms and concerns, thoroughly examine your nose, and explain your deviated septum treatment options.
How Much Does
Deviated septum surgery, or septoplasty, can range widely depending on insurance coverage and deductible amounts. A deviated septum affects the overall function of your nose, which means your medical insurance usually covers most of the cost. If you don’t have insurance, our office provides a flat rate fee to make better breathing affordable to all.
Deviated Septum Surgery Recovery
With our skilled septoplasty techniques, most patients experience only one to two days of internal nasal swelling. You may experience some pain, fatigue, nasal congestion, and a runny nose following deviated septum surgery, but these are normal and temporary.
Most of our patients are back to work within a few days, and are able to control any lingering pain with over-the-counter medications like Tylenol and Motrin. We do prescribe a limited amount of stronger pain medications to ensure that your recovery is comfortable. We advise our septoplasty patients to “take it easy” for a week or two after septal deviation surgery (meaning no CrossFit or boxing workouts!). We also provide our septoplasty patients a list of deviated septum surgery recovery tips.
Choose Advanced ENT & Allergy Center
to Fix Your Deviated Septum
If you’re struggling with chronic breathing issues or sinusitis, consult a deviated septum specialist at Advanced ENT & Allergy Center. We have performed thousands of successful septoplasty surgeries — let us help you breathe better!
Frequently Asked Deviated Septum Questions
Deviated septum symptoms include congestion and difficulty breathing. You may also experience frequent nosebleeds, frequent sinus infections, headaches, facial pain, and snoring or noisy breathing during sleep. If you are struggling with any of these symptoms, you may need crooked septum surgery.
Sometimes you can visibly see a crooked septum on the outer surface of the nose because the bridge of the nose looks off-center. However, your doctor will usually need to use a nasal speculum to look inside the nose to determine if your septum is crooked. A deviated septum caused by injury is usually irregularly shaped, while a deviated septum developed in the womb usually has an “S” or “C” shape.
We usually recommend septoplasty surgery when patients have a deviated septum and cannot control their symptoms through over-the-counter medications.
There is no way to prevent a deviated septum, but you can try to avoid activities that may cause trauma to your nose. Symptoms of a deviated septum may also worsen with age.
Deviated septum surgery recovery time is quick — patients are usually back to work within 3-4 days after their septoplasty surgery.
Yes — septoplasty often significantly improves snoring and trouble breathing during sleep. .
A deviated septum affects the overall function of your nose, which means your medical insurance usually covers some or most of the cost. We encourage you to contact your insurance provider to determine what they will cover.