Septoplasty, also known as functional rhinoplasty, corrects breathing problems caused by a deviated septum – the thin wall of cartilage and bone that divides the nostrils and nasal cavities. Most rhinoplasty is done to improve cosmetic appearance, but there is an increasing number of patients in Miami consulting Dr. Lampert for problems with nasal breathing. Often the cause is that the septum is not positioned properly, causing one nostril to have restricted airflow.
Symptoms of a Deviated Septum
Slight deviations of the septum are not noticeable and are only diagnosed during an examination. Symptoms of restricted breathing may be attributed to other causes as well.
Some of the symptoms of a deviated septum are:
- Restricted breathing in one nostril, especially noticeable during a cold
- Difficulty breathing while participating in sports
- A crooked or deviated nose
- Noisy nasal breathing while sleeping
- Enlarged turbinates
- Dry mouth after sleeping with an open mouth
- Pressure in the nose or sinuses
Before & Afters
All plastic surgeons should be judged on the aesthetic merits of their work. Review Dr. Lampert’s before and after gallery to see what he has accomplished.
Causes of a Deviated Septum
This condition can be present at birth or can be caused by a prior traumatic injury. In infants, childbirth or long forgotten nasal trauma can cause injury to the growing septal cartilage. This can cause nasal and septal development to occur with increasing deviation as the child grows. Sports injuries, car accidents, falls and minor accidents (such as tripping or bumping into someone) can rupture small ligaments and dislodge the septum from its proper anatomic location.
The septum is composed of a thin wall of cartilage and bone and is easily injured, dislocated and fractured. Frequently this results in a nosebleed at the time it happens. Isolated injuries of the septum can sometimes go undetected even with x-ray imaging. The resulting deviated septum can often remain undetected until symptoms become more pronounced.
Restricted Breathing? See a Rhinoplasty Surgeon
The internal structure of the nose is very specialized. A deviated septum surgery requires experience and extensive knowledge of this structure. If you are experiencing any symptoms of restricted breathing, contact Dr. Lampert for an examination. There may be other reasons for restricted breathing, including enlarged turbinates or allergic rhinitis. Whatever the cause, Dr. Lampert can help restore your full nasal function.
This surgery is done on an outpatient basis by Dr. Lampert. General anesthetic is administered to ensure patient comfort and safety. As a board certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Lampert follows all safety protocols as required. There is always an anesthesiologist present monitoring patients during surgery, as well as his certified staff.
During surgery, the septum is relocated and straightened to the middle of the nose, creating two equally functioning nostrils. It may be necessary to remove or excise some of the cartilage during surgery, in order to reposition it properly. Enlarged turbinates, if present, are carefully fractured or reduced. Repair of any internal nasal valve collapse is usually achieved with small cartilage grafts and absorbable sutures. The surgery usually takes an hour or two, but it can take longer in more severe cases.
Septoplasty/Deviated Septum Surgery Recovery
After patients have fully recovered from the anesthetic, they can go home with a friend or family member. Patients are not allowed to drive for 24 hours following an anesthetic. It will be helpful to have a friend or family member remain with the patient for the first 24 to 48. As a note, use only the prescribed or approved over-the-counter pain medication. Avoid anything containing ibuprofen or naproxen as this could cause excessive bleeding.
After general anesthetic, some patients experience nausea. Eating small, light meals for a few days following surgery will usually help avoid this. Soft foods such as eggs or soups, or protein drinks are good choices to minimize pressure on the surgical site.
There will be a loose gauze “mustache” bandage placed under the nose, which will need to be changed when saturated. This can be quite frequent during the first 24 hours. It is important to keep this “mustache” dressing loose and resting on the upper lip. Dr. Lampert wants absolutely no “clothes lining” or pressure on the nose and nasal tip.
It is important to keep the head elevated as much as possible, as this can reduce swelling. It is not unusual for there to be swelling in the upper lip, the nose and the cheeks for a few days.
Pain medication will be prescribed along with antibiotics. Ensure that all medication is taken as prescribed and that all antibiotics are fully finished as directed.
Dr. Lampert always provides comprehensive instructions for post-operative care. He makes himself available at any time after your surgery, allowing him to help you with any concerns that may arise. With his compassionate approach, he delivers among the best septoplasty Miami has available.
Don’t suffer with restricted breathing and impair your health. Contact our office for your examination and consultation.