Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors
"Is septoplasty usually successful?"
I broke my nose and now my doctor says I need to have a septoplasty to correct a blockage in my nose. I am very worried about how my nose will be going forward. Are septoplasty surgeries usually successful? Will I have to keep having treatment afterward?
Septoplasties are very common surgical procedures performed by ear-nose-and throat surgeons (aka otolaryngology-head and neck surgeons). They are generally performed because one side of the nose is extremely blocked off, which is often a function of previous trauma. One theory suggests that the earlier the trauma occurs in life, the less force is needed to lead to a deviated septum. Regardless of the cause, it is a very safe and simple procedure, and usually results in an excellent outcome. As part of the surgery, your surgeon will remove a small piece of the cartilage in the septum (the middle part of the nose), and will remove any bone pieces that are adding to the obstruction. This can be done very safely, and the mucosa that was overlying the cartilage can then be laid back down. Packing is sometimes used to hold the mucosa together and to prevent further damage, which could potentially lead to a hole in the septum itself. The recovery is generally excellent, and the long term results are very satisfying to the majority of patients. If you have concerns about the surgery, it is always acceptable and welcome to get a second opinion. Please speak to your doctor.
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