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How Can You Prepare for Septoplasty Surgery?

With 260,000 performed yearly in the U.S., septoplasty surgeries are one of the most common procedures done by ear, nose and throat (ENT) providers. Septoplasty surgery is commonly used to fix deviated septums but can also be effective in treating nasal polyps or obstruction, chronic sinusitis and chronic nosebleeds.


Doctor examining a patient after septoplasty surgery

How Effective Is Septoplasty Surgery?

One study analyzing the outcome of septoplasty surgery of 86 individuals found that 89.5% of patients reported a subjective improvement in their nasal obstruction after three months, with some continued improvement after six months. The study further concluded that improvement was most significant in younger patients.


What Can You Expect From Your Surgery?

Most septoplasty surgeries will follow similar procedures. Knowing what to expect from your procedure can help you prepare for your septoplasty surgery.


Before Surgery

Before your surgery, your ear, nose and throat specialist or surgeon will give you a list of pre-surgery care instructions, which may include but are not limited to:

  1. When to stop eating and drinking

  2. Which medicines to stop taking

  3. Whether to prepare a ride home following the surgery


During Surgery

Septoplasty surgeries may differ slightly from patient to patient, but most will include the following steps:

  1. You will be given local or general anesthesia based on the complexity of your surgery.

  2. The surgeon will make a small incision on the side of the nose, lift the membrane protecting the septum and begin to reshape or remove parts of the bone and cartilage. The amount of reshaping or removal will depend on the type of obstruction.

  3. The surgeon will replace the membrane over the septum.

  4. Depending on your needs, splints, dissolvable stitches or soft packing will be placed to keep nasal tissue in place and to prevent nosebleeds and scarring.


After Surgery

With most septoplasty surgeries, you will be able to go home once the anesthesia wears off. Home care instructions will vary based on the patient but may include information on managing pain, swelling, bleeding and possible injury.


Pain and swelling should decrease within two weeks, but it may take three to six months for the septum to heal fully. During healing time, avoiding activities that may lead to injury or damage to the nose or surrounding areas is important. While a fall game of touch football in Gage Park might sound fun, it is best to cheer from the sides until you have fully recovered from your septoplasty.


For more information on septoplasty surgery, contact Topeka Ear Nose & Throat today to make an appointment with one of our specialists.

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