Septoplasty treatments involve the removal of cartilage from a patient's nasal cavities, to straighten a deviated septum and improve airflow and remove obstructions in the cavities.
The nasal septum is the partition between the nostrils, which is usually located in the centre of the nose. If the septum deviates into one of the nasal cavities it can cause difficulties with breathing or lead to chronic sinus problems.
Septoplasty is distinct from septorhinoplasty, which involves the separation of bone as well as cartilage to alter the external shape of the nose. However, patients who have damaged their nose or require corrective surgery in several areas may choose to combine the treatments, and may also consider rhinoplasty to improve the appearance of their nose.
Septoplasty is a reconstructive plastic surgery procedure and is carried out under anaesthesia.
The surgery typically takes around 90 minutes and involves the surgeon making an incision in the septum lining to access the cartilage. Excess cartilage is then removed, and the surgeon may fix the septum in a central position with sutures.
Following septoplasty, the nasal cavities may be irrigated or packed, with gauze fixed beneath to collect blood. The excess bleeding typically stops after one to two days.