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What is a deviated nasal septum?

The septum is the cartilage and bone inside your nose that separates your nostrils. The septum is usually straight but it can be deviated (bent), causing symptoms of a blocked nose.

Figures showing a straight nasal septum and a bent nasal septum

What are the benefits of surgery?

Your septum will be straight, which should relieve your symptoms of a blocked nose.

Are there any alternatives to surgery?

Surgery is recommended as it is the only dependable way to cure the condition. You cannot straighten your septum without surgery.

What does the operation involve?

The operation is usually performed under a general anaesthetic but a local anaesthetic can be used. The operation usually takes about 45 minutes.

Your surgeon will make a cut on the lining of your nose over your septum and lift the mucosa away from the cartilage and bone. They will remove the parts of the cartilage and bone that are bent and they will put the rest back in a straight position.

Your surgeon may place some packing in your nose to prevent bleeding.

What complications can happen?

Some of these can be serious and can even cause death.

General complications of any operation

  • Pain
  • Bleeding
  • Infection of the surgical site (wound)
  • Blood clot in your leg
  • Blood clot in your lung

Specific complications of this operation

  • Adhesions, where scar tissue forms deep inside your nose and can obstruct airflow
  • Developing a collection of blood (haematoma) or an abscess between the layers of your septum
  • Making a hole in your septum
  • Damage to nerves that supply the skin and the gum over your front upper teeth
  • Change to the shape of your nose
  • Reduced sense of smell
  • Toxic shock syndrome, which is an infection of your bloodstream

How soon will I recover?

You should be able to go home the same day.

If you had non-dissolvable packing in your nose, you will need to stay overnight and the packing will be removed the next morning.

You will need to stay off work and away from groups of people for 2 weeks. This is to avoid catching a cold, which could result in an infection.

Do not exercise, have a hot bath or bend down for 2 weeks.

Regular exercise should help you to return to normal activities as soon as possible. Before you start exercising, ask the healthcare team or your GP for advice.

Most people make a full recovery and can return to normal activities.

Why choose The London Clinic?

The London Clinic is dedicated to providing the best, personalised healthcare with over 600 world-renowned consultants available to offer informed health advice and treatment.

Spanning Harley Street and Devonshire Place, The London Clinic is situated in the heart of London’s internationally-known medical district. This central location, together with state-of-the art technologies and facilities that are not widely available in other hospitals, makes The London Clinic the hospital of choice for around 120,000 patients every year.

The London Clinic is an HTA licensed and JACIE accredited cancer centre with an ‘Excellent’ MacMillan Quality Environment Mark and with access to a Level 3 intensive care unit.

Offering affordable and competitive self-pay packages and expert support from Clinical Nurse Specialists and our specialised multidisciplinary team, over 98% of our patients said they would recommend The London Clinic to their friends and families.

TREATMENT COST

The London Clinic offers affordable, competitive self-pay packages for certain treatments. An all-inclusive package for this treatment is available from £3,195. Please call +44 (0)20 3219 3315 to speak to our helpful team to find out more and to book an appointment.

Summary

Surgery will result in you having a straight septum, which should relieve your symptoms of a blocked nose.

Disclaimer

The operation and treatment information on this website is published under license by The London Clinic from EIDO Healthcare UK and is protected by copyright laws. Other than for your personal, non-commercial use, you may not copy, print out, download or otherwise reproduce any of the information. The information should not replace advice that your relevant health professional would give you.

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