Septorhinoplasty is a procedure that is performed to improve the breathing ability and also the external appearance of the nose. It is performed for cosmetic and health-related purposes and is known to improve the quality of life of the people.(1) Septorhinoplasty is done in 2 procedures, which are:
- Septoplasty: It is a procedure in which the septum is repositioned and straightened. A deviated septum is a condition in which the nasal septum (a ridge in the middle of the nose between the nostrils) is misaligned or crooked. This leads to difficulty in breathing and can also lead to dry mouth. This condition is corrected by septorhinoplasty.
- Rhinoplasty: It is a surgical procedure that involves changing the shape of the nose. It also involves removing or reshaping the cartilage and bones of the nose.
Septorhinoplasty is done to improve the function of the nose by reshaping the parts of the septum that are deviated. The technique for the Septorhinoplasty procedure depends on the surgeon involved in doing it and the correction to be made.
Before the Septorhinoplasty procedure, the surgeon takes the complete medical history and gives instructions on the procedure. The individual is also asked to stop blood thinner and avoid smoking to prevent complications.
During the Septorhinoplasty procedure, the person is completely sedated. An incision is made from inside the nose and the bone and cartilage are gently lifted. The part of the cartilage that is causing the deviation is removed or reshaped and other structures that may be affecting breathing are also addressed. The rest of the tissues and bone are put back into place. During the Septorhinoplasty procedure, if needed the surgeon may reshape the cartilage, shave the areas of bone that are humped and break and reset the nasal bones to correct the deviation and improve the appearance of the nose. The incision is then closed and the nose is packed with gauze to stop bleeding
In most cases, the person can go back home as the anesthesia wears off. Any splint or packing is removed by the surgeon during the office appointment after surgery.
Risks and Side Effects of Septorhinoplasty
Just like any other surgery, there are a few risks involved with septorhinoplasty. These include:
- Excess bleeding
- Blot clot in the nose
- Hole in the septum
- Decreased sense of smell
- Change in the shape of the nose
- Reaction to anesthesia
- Temporary numbness in the gums, teeth, and nose
Before nodding a yes for the surgery, it is important to inform the surgeon about any medical condition, if present. This may reduce the risk of complications. Rheumatologic conditions, smoking, and certain medications may increase the risk of poor wound healing.
Additional surgery may be required in people in whom the symptoms do not improve after septorhinoplasty.
What Happens After Septorhinoplasty?
After the Septorhinoplasty surgery, the person needs to take some precautions to avoid bleeding and swelling for a few weeks. The doctor gives post-surgery instructions, which include:
- Avoid blowing nose
- Elevate head while sleeping
- Avoid clothes that need to be pulled overhead
- Avoid intense cardiovascular exercise including jogging
- It may take the nose 3-6 months to completely settle. As the septum stabilize, an improvement in breathing is observed.
Septorhinoplasty improves the appearance as well as the breathing as it removes any nasal obstruction along with reshaping the nasal septum. It involves the benefits of septoplasty and rhinoplasty in one. If your nasal septum is bothering you with the looks or causing discomfort, septorhinoplasty is a good option to be considered.