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Nasal Septal Deviation or Deviated Nasal Septum (DNS) is a physical disorder of the nose, involving a displacement of the nasal septum, defined as the deviation in the nasal septum from normal/middle of the nasal cavity. Septum is a thin wall made up of cartilage and bone which divides the nasal cavity into two equal halves (two separate nostrils).

The deviation of nasal septum makes one nostril smaller than the other and thus causes difficulties in breathing for a person. Deviated nasal septum may be either a birth defect or develop during growth, or caused by an injury to the nose or face. DNS is often caused due to a trauma or an accident affecting face and nose. Some of the most possible causes of DNS include:

  • Congenital nature of the disease
  • Aging process
  • Minute changes in swelling of nasal tissues


Approximately 80% of people are born with some or the other deviation. Most of these deformities often do not have any symptoms. But, few of the symptoms include:

  • Nose obstruction
  • Nose bleeding
  • Snoring
  • Preference for sleeping on a particular side
  • Facial Pain, Postnasal drip, and headache
  • Sleep problems (Sleep Apnea)
  • Difficulty breathing through the nose
  • Sinus infections


Diagnosis of DNS by your ENT physician is generally achieved during the physical examination.

  • A bright light and an instrument may help in viewing the nasal septum by opening the nostril (nasal speculum).
  • For some of the deviated septums that lie deep in the nose, further evaluation with a small telescope or endoscope may be required.

Imaging with CT scan may rarely be required to view the extent of deviation and other associated findings. Based on these examinations, your ENT physician can diagnose a deviated septum and determine the seriousness of the condition.


DNS is a common condition and many people with this condition, do not require treatment. Some of the symptoms such as a nasal congestion or postnasal drip may be alleviated with medication, including decongestants, antihistamines, or nasal sprays. In several cases, medications are attempted before surgical procedure is recommended. To repair the septum, surgery may be recommended in patients with deviated septum causing breathing problems, sleep apnea and snoring.

SEPTOPLASTY (Surgical Procedure for DNS)

Surgical procedure performed to repair a deviated septum is called a septoplasty. It is also known as submucous resection of the septum, or septal reconstruction. During the surgery, nasal septum is straightened and repositioned in the middle of your nose. This requires your ENT physician to cut and remove parts of the nasal septum prior to reinserting them in the proper position.

Why Septoplasty?

In cases of severe deviated septum, it can block one side of nose and lessen the airflow, causing difficulty breathing through one or both sides of nose. Septoplasty straightens the nasal septum by trimming, repositioning and replacing cartilage, bone or both.

One may consider septoplasty (surgery) to correct a deviated septum if experience symptoms such as difficulty in breathing through nose that significantly affects quality of life.


As with any major surgery, septoplasty also carries risks, such as bleeding, infection and an adverse reaction to anaesthesia. Other probable risks specific to septoplasty includes:

  • Excessive bleeding
  • A change in the shape of nose
  • An opening in the septum (septal perforation)
  • A decrease in the sense of smell
  • A collection of blood in the nasal space that would need to be drained (septal hematoma)
  • A temporary numb sensation by the upper gum or teeth
  • Nasal obstruction
  • Bleeding
  • Chronic nasal drainage
  • Eye damage (rare)
  • Brain fluid leak or infection (rare)
  • Septal perforation
  • Failure to resolve any associated nasal or sinus problem.

Additional surgery may be necessary to treat some of these complications or if the result of the surgery does not match your expectation.

PREOPERATIVE CARE: Stop taking certain medications such as aspirin, ibuprofen, and other blood thinners two weeks before the surgery to decrease your risk of excessive bleeding during and after the procedure. Do not eat or drink anything after midnight, the night prior to the procedure if you are going to be under general anaesthesia.

INTRA-PROCEDURE: Depending upon the complexity of the condition, septoplasty generally takes from 30 to 90 minutes to complete. It is carried out either under local anaesthesia or general anaesthesia, depending on what your doctor decides, best for you. In a typical procedure, your ENT surgeon makes an incision on one side of your nose to access the septum.

Following this, the mucous membrane, a protective covering of the septum is lifted up and the deviated septum is moved into the correct position. Any barriers such as extra pieces of bone or cartilage are removed during the procedure. The last step includes the repositioning of the mucous membrane.

One may need stitches to hold the septum and membrane in place. But, packing the nose with cotton is occasionally enough to keep them in position. Pictures of your nose before and after the procedure are captured by your ENT surgeon. Comparing the pictures helps you to know how your nose has changed.

POST-OPERATIVE CARE: It is an outpatient procedure unless major complications arise and you'll be able to go home on the same day as the procedure, once the anaesthesia has worn off. The nose dressing can be removed a day or two after surgery. Your surgeon will also prescribe pain medication as necessary.

  • Avoid aspirin, ibuprofen, and other drugs that thin the blood. This prevents and lowers the risk of bleeding problems after the procedure.
  • Should also limit your physical activity for some weeks after surgery. This minimizes swelling and promotes healing.
  • Elevate your head at night to keep the swelling down.
  • Do not blow your nose for at least three days after surgery.


BSR ENT hospital is well-known by the team of experts and experienced surgeons with a proven track record of successful surgeries since the past 40 years. We are trusted by our patients for the care and successful treatment outcomes. Our experienced and highly qualified doctors at BSR are skilled to provide best treatment solutions to the patients.

The latest technologies and the equipment further support the vision of BSR to provide the best in class treatment facilities to patients. The diagnosis and treatment is quick as the hospital is equipped with in-house laboratory for tests.

We, at BSR believe in patient-centric approach to treatment and care and ensure that every patient receives quality treatment at affordable price.

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