Surgery for a Deviated Septum
The septum is the flat piece of cartilage that divides the left and right nostrils. Developmentally, it grows proportionately from childhood to adulthood and then ceases to grow as one matures as an adult. Structurally, the septum divides the right and left nasal passages and integrates into the bone of the maxilla, the skullbase, and the upper nose in order to form a rigid platform for nasal support.
"A deviated septum can impair your quality of life. Septal surgery is an exceptional outpatient procedure that can help you breathe better. For those patients who have difficulty breathing, it is life-changing." Dr. Raffy Karamanoukian
The septum, although well supported with cartilage and bony attachments, is susceptible to blunt trauma and may thus become twisted if there is associated trauma to the area from a fall or blow to the nose. Once twisted, the cartilage begins to bend towards one or both of the nasal passages, leading to a condition known as a deviated septum.
As the deviated septal cartilage heals, it may cause an obstruction to normal air passage through the nose. If the obstruction is severe enough, it may cause symptoms that may make it hard to breathe through one side of the nose during times of increased activity or exercise. Snoring, chronic nose or sinus infections, difficulty breathing, and sleep apnea may all result from the condition.
Dr. Raffy Karamanoukian performs a surgical procedure to correct a deviated septum if there are enough associated symptoms that one's quality of life is impaired. An athelete who has difficulty breathing during training is just one example of how a deviated septum can impact quality of life. Septal surgery is an outpatient procedure and often covered by PPO insurance plans if there is associated functional or physiologic impairment.
If you suspect that you have a nasal fracture or broken nose, Dr. Raffy Karamanoukian can help you assess the injury and determine the likelihood of functional nasal obstruction with or without treatment. Emergency consultations are available for broken noses.