Nasal obstruction surgery is a specific type of rhinoplasty that is performed to improve airway function in the nasal passages. There are many reasons why a person may experience nasal obstruction. Abnormal growth or injury, swelling of the interior structures of the nose, a former surgery that resulted in complications, or even just the aging process can all cause partial or total blockage of the nasal passages.
Contact us online today to learn more about your options for rhinoplasty to correct nasal obstruction. The Institute of Reconstructive Plastic Surgery of Central Texas helps men and women from Austin, Round Rock and throughout Texas. Count on our team to help restore function and appearance through a wide range of procedures.
Benefits of Nasal Obstruction Surgery
When the nasal passages are blocked, air flow is partially or drastically reduced. Patients with nasal obstruction may also notice a constant feeling of congestion or stuffiness. Through surgery, the nasal passages are reshaped to allow improved air flow again.
The nasal passages can become blocked due to a number of different issues. For example, the nasal septum, which divides the nostrils down the middle on the inside, can be crooked. This might be due to genetics or because of an old injury. When the septum is deviated in this way, it can cause breathing and congestion problems. Repairing a deviated septum is called a septoplasty.
Swollen nasal turbinates are another common cause for nasal obstruction. The turbinates are large bones inside the nose that are covered with tissue. The tissue enlarges in response to environmental irritants. Turbinates can also swell in response to simple changes in air temperature or humidity, or due to illness like a sinus infection. Sometimes this swelling goes away on its own. Chronic inflammation requires surgery to repair.
Aging is another commonly seen reason for nasal obstruction. Cartilage weakens with age, becoming less resistant to the effects of gravity. When this happens, the sides of the nose can begin to collapse inward. The change in shape of the nostrils then obstructs normal air flow.
Air flow can also be reduced from complications after an earlier surgery. In this case, revision rhinoplasty may be incorporated along with nasal obstruction surgery. Although the purpose of nasal obstruction surgery is to improve airflow through the nasal passages, elements of cosmetic rhinoplasty may be included as well. This may be for aesthetic reasons, or because form and function so often go hand in hand.
Understanding the Procedure
The surgery itself will vary depending on the reasons correction is needed in the first place. Your surgeon will work closely with you to find the cause of your nasal obstruction. Together, a course of treatment is then decided to address the primary cause (or causes) and improve airflow.
In the case of a deviated septum, the cartilage is reshaped for a straighter passageway. For enlarged turbinates, the structure may be fully or partially removed to clear the airways. In the case of aging, surgeons restructure the nose for improved support once again. While the specifics of each surgery vary, the end results of improved airflow remains the primary goal.
Recovery and Results
Recovery following nasal obstruction is similar to the healing process following rhinoplasty. Patients will notice bruising and swelling at first. As this dissipates, improvement in the air passages is noticeable. Many of our patients see benefits immediately, with others noticing improvements later on in the recovery process.
Nasal obstruction surgery from the Institute of Reconstructive Plastic Surgery of Central Texas improves breathing function and reduces the feeling of congestion for improved quality of life. When cosmetic rhinoplasty is performed at the same time, you’ll notice a positive change in your profile as well.