Septoplasty/Deviated Septum in Tampa and St. Petersburg, FL
Snoring, frequent nose bleeds, difficulty sleeping and congestion may be signs of a deviated septum. While these symptoms may be controlled with medications and other therapies, often times surgery offers the optimum results. Septoplasty/deviated septum surgery at Davis Facial Plastic Surgery is performed by dual-board certified facial plastic and reconstructive surgeon and otolaryngologist, Dr. Dean G. Davis, so the men and women in and around Tampa and St. Petersburg, Florida feel confident in the outcomes of their procedures.
What is Septoplasty?
Septoplasty is the surgical correction of a deviated nasal septum. The septum is the divider in the nose between the two nostrils, consisting of bone and cartilage.
When the septum is shifted to one side of the nose or the other, it is said to be a deviated septum. Most men and women with deviated septum have one nostril and nasal passage that is far smaller than the other nasal passage. The most commonly seen septum defect is a deviated septum, and corrective surgery is the only solution.
Septoplasty is the name of the procedure that corrects a displaced or deviated septum, providing improved airflow through the nasal passages.
Who is an Ideal Candidate for a Septoplasty?
The best candidate is someone who wants to:
- Repair a bent, crooked, or deformed nasal septum blocking the nose airway
- Repair a nasal septum hole
- Stop nosebleeds that are uncontrollable
Benefits of Septoplasty
The septum comprises the nose’s inner wall, dividing the left and right nostrils and is composed of cartilage and bone. The septum normally equally divides the nose, but a deviated septum favors one side or the other, resulting in a partial or total nasal passage blockage.
A deviated septum may be inherited or the result of trauma. The condition can gradually worsen with age. Deviated septum cause a nasal obstruction that may be mild to severe, at times totally blocking the nasal passages airflow.
In some cases, a deviated septum may create minor complaints such as noisy daytime breathing. Sleep apnea or snoring may be a result during the night. Another common symptom of a deviated septum is frequent nosebleeds, sinusitis, and frequent sinus infections. Congestion in the blocked nostril is another frequent complaint of those who have a deviated septum. Other common symptoms include:
- Facial pain
- Postnasal drip
Treatment can help relieve symptoms of a deviated septum. Decongestants may relieve nasal tissue swelling while allergy medication may help with a runny nose or nasal blockage. Inflammation can be reduced with the use of nasal steroid sprays. It is important to understand, however, that these methods are only temporary. The only permanent solution to a deviated septum is surgery.
The process of septum repair involves straightening out the cartilage and fixing the inflammation and sinusitis that comes with the condition. Septoplasty may be the sole procedure performed or may occur in combination with rhinoplasty surgery.
Preparing for a Septoplasty
You may be required to avoid specific medications one week before your surgery, such as blood thinners, ibuprofen, or aspirin to lower your chances of excessive bleeding while the surgery is being performed.
Before your surgery, Dr. Davis may take some photos of your nose to serve as the basis for “before and after” photo comparisons.
Patients typically receive general anesthesia to put them to sleep during their procedure. In this case, you should not eat or drink anything prior to your surgery. This is done to prevent any nausea or vomiting due to the anesthesia.
You should have a friend or family member available to drive you home following your surgery because the anesthesia will make you drowsy for some time after your Septoplasty.
The Septoplasty Procedure
A septoplasty normally takes around 60 to 90 minutes.
Dr. Davis begins by making an incision on your nose to gain access to the septum. He raises the mucous membrane that covers the septum and eases the deviated septum into its normal position. Any blockages such as pieces of cartilage or bone will be removed at this time. The last step involves putting the mucous membrane back into its proper location.
Stitches may be required to maintain the position of the septum and membrane.
Recovery After a Septoplasty
Since the procedure is normally performed on an outpatient basis, you may return home on the same day as your surgery, once the anesthesia has worn off. It is normal for your nose to be uncomfortable and swollen.
You should limit any physical exertion, including sports or vigorous exercise, for a few weeks following your septoplasty to promote healing and minimize swelling. Dr. Davis may prescribe pain medications to be used as needed.
To recover more quickly:
- Keep your head elevated at night to minimize swelling
- Wear shirts that button from the front so you are not required to raise clothes over your head
- Try not to blow your nose
Even though septoplasty wound healing may be speedy, your general process of healing may be somewhat slow. Tissues such as cartilage may require one year to fully settle into the new position and shape. However, you should find your breathing will improve not long after your procedure, and it will continue to improve as you heal fully.
How Much Does Septoplasty Cost?
Insurance companies may cover a septoplasty if it is a significant problem for you. To help you cover your portion of expenses, we accept CareCredit® financing. Dr. Davis accepts payment via cash, check, or credit card, as well.
If you suffer from a deviated septum, we can help! Contact our office today to schedule your personal septoplasty consultation with Dr. Davis!