Dallas Sinus Center can diagnose deviated nasal septum conditions to provide treatment options.
What is a deviated nasal septum and why is it a problem?
Another problem with a deviated septum is nosebleeds. When air passes over the area of the deviated septum that is more protruded it can dry the overlying layer. This layer may then crack and expose the underlying vessels that then bleed. These nosebleeds are quite common and can be stopped by just applying pressure to the front of the septum by squeezing the nostrils together.
Estimates are that 80 percent of all nasal septums are off-center, a condition that is generally not noticed. A deviated septum occurs when the septum is severely shifted away from the midline. The most common symptom from a badly deviated or crooked septum is difficulty breathing through the nose. The symptoms are usually worse on one side, and sometimes actually occur on the side opposite the bend. In some cases the crooked septum can interfere with the drainage of the sinuses, resulting in repeated sinus infections. Septoplasty is the preferred surgical treatment to correct a deviated septum.
A deviated septum may cause one or more of the following:
- Blockage of one or both nostrils
- Nasal congestion, sometimes one-sided
- Frequent nosebleeds
- Frequent sinus infections
- At times, facial pain, headaches, postnasal drip
- Noisy breathing during sleep (in infants and young children)
- In some cases, a person with a mildly deviated septum has symptoms only when he or she also has a “cold” (an upper respiratory tract infection). In these individuals, the respiratory infection triggers nasal inflammation that temporarily amplifies any mild airflow problems related to the deviated septum. Once the “cold” resolves, and the nasal inflammation subsides, symptoms of a deviated septum often resolve, too.
Diagnosis of a Deviated Septum
Your First Visit
Nasal Endoscopy is a useful tool to determine the degree and exact site of the deviation and help determine the procedure that may be necessary to correct your nasal septal deviation.
Septoplasty is a surgical procedure performed entirely through the nostrils and no bruising or external signs occur. Because sinusitis can be associated with a deviated nasal septum, septoplasty is often combined with sinus surgery. The time required for the operation averages about 1 hour, and is usually done on an outpatient basis. During the surgery, badly deviated portions of the septum may be removed entirely, or they may be readjusted and reinserted into the nose.