The structure which separates the left side of the nose from the right side is referred to as the septum. In most children the septum will extend down the center of the nose, but sometimes it may deviate into the cavity, which narrows it and restricts airflow. This will lead to an enlargement of the inferior turbinate on the opposite side, which can obstruct the nose. Nasal surgery is used to correct this problem.
What is nasal surgery?
Nasal surgery, which is also referred to as septoplasty, is a surgical operation designed to straighten the septum. In most cases it can be completed in about one hour. Prior to the start of the procedure, the child will be placed under either local anesthesia (where they will remain awake but not feel any pain), or general anesthesia (where they will sleep during the operation). The surgeon must then realign a part of the bone and cartilage within the nasal cavity.
The surgeon will operate within the nostrils, making a cut within the septum’s lining so that he can get to the cartilage or bone. The surgeon will be sure to preserve some of the bone so that structural support is maintained. Once the septum has been straightened, the surgeon will stabilize it temporarily using splints, plastic tubes and internal sutures.
What are the benefits of nasal surgery?
Nasal surgery provides both cosmetic as well as practical health benefits. Some children are born with crooked noses, but it can also result from an injury. While the majority of people don’t have a septum that is perfectly straight, those with a deviated septum will display significant misalignment in their nose. In addition to the unattractive appearance, a deviated septum may also lead to a blockage of the sinuses, which will cause sinusitis. Additional benefits of this surgical procedure include:
- Improved breathing
- Prevention of sinusitis
- Straightened nose
- Reduced nasal swelling
- Mucus can drain normally
- Cures epistaxis
What are the risks associated with nasal surgery?
There are few complications which are associated with nasal surgery, and when they occur in most cases they can be treated with antibiotics. During the operation the surgeon may notice a leakage of spinal fluid from the body. Only about 2 percent of patients exhibit this leakage; and because it is usually discovered during surgery, the doctor can treat the problem at that time so that the patient doesn’t experience any adverse consequences.
What does the post-care entail?
Once a child has completed their nasal surgery at ENT for Children, a gauze dressing will be put on their noise, and it must be worn while the nose heals. Parents will need to change it when it comes dirty or wet. The child should be prevented from blowing their nose, and they will need to breathe through their mouth as the result of a packing which will be placed in their nose temporarily (it will need to be worn for a few days after the surgery is completed). Discomfort in the nose or headaches are normal, but parents who have questions or concerns should contact Dr. Samadi for further details.