A septoplasty is a procedure that is done to correct a deviated septum and correct chronic breathing challenges.
The nasal septum is the bone and cartilage that divides the nasal passages in two. It is lined by a thin membrane known as mucosa, which acts as skin and keeps the nose moist. A deviated septum occurs when the cartilage and bone are displaced to one side. This can be present from birth, or it may result from a nasal injury.
About 80% of people have some deviation to the nasal septum, but only a few have significant symptoms, such as difficulty breathing, sinus infections, or continuous nasal congestion. A septal deviation can also cause the nose to appear crooked. The only way to permanently relieve these symptoms is through surgery, though some medications can provide temporary relief.
A Phoenix septoplasty involves repositioning the septum or removing precise amounts of bone and cartilage to create even breathing passages.
To begin, Dr. Shapiro will raise the mucosa lining off the septum to reshape the structure or remove small areas of bone and cartilage. He will then reattach the lining. Many patients choose to undergo a cosmetic rhinoplasty during their septoplasty procedure. In this case, Dr. Shapiro will also reshape the entire nasal structure to create facial harmony.
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The septoplasty procedure is not painful and typically has a short recovery. Internal splints will likely be placed to stabilize the new midline position of the septum. These splints will be removed one week after surgery. Splints are used because the septal cartilage has “memory” and attempts to assume its former shape after surgery. If a rhinoplasty is added to the surgical correction of the septum, external splints will also be removed one week after surgery to reveal your new, straight nose.
Because this surgery is performed on an outpatient basis, you will be free to return home the same day. It is normal to feel fatigue or mild pain after the procedure, as well as nasal congestion and mild drainage. Dr. Shapiro, a Scottsdale plastic surgeon, will prescribe oral pain medication to minimize discomfort. Stuffiness is the result of swelling and typically improves after the first week.
If you suffer from nasal obstruction, breathing problems or a visibly deviated nose, you may be a candidate for a Scottsdale septoplasty. There are many problems that may cause difficulty breathing or nasal congestion, however, including polyps. The best way to determine if you have a deviated septum that requires correction is through a consultation with Dr. Shapiro, which will involve assessing your nose with a nasal endoscopy.
Unless you choose to have a rhinoplasty performed as well, this surgery will not involve the exterior of your nose. As such, your nose will not be broken and external bruising will be unlikely.
Some health insurance companies do cover correction of a deviated septum, although some insurance companies consider this an experimental or investigational procedure unless certain conditions are met. We do not work with any insurance companies and your procedure would be an out of pocket expense.
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Dr. Shapiro is an award-winning, board-certified plastic surgeon with nearly three decades of experience in his field. With impressive technical skill and a talent for creating natural-looking results, his practice has become a leading destination for discerning patients throughout the country.
Known for his compassion and honesty, Dr. Shapiro strives to educate his patients so that they are empowered about their care. He carefully explains the procedures, expected results, and techniques in a way that anyone can understand. Additionally, he personally guides his clients every step of the way – from the initial consultation to their post-operative care – to ensure an enjoyable experience and the best possible results.