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Deviated nasal septum – Causes, Signs and Symptoms

What is deviated nasal septum?

Deviated nasal septum

Deviated nasal septum is a disorder in which the wall between the two nostrils and the nasal cavities is deviated. The wall separating the nostrils and the nasal cavities is called the septum, and it can deviate either to the left or the right. In this article, you will know about Deviated nasal septum symptoms, types and causes.

What are the different types of deviations in the Deviated nasal septum?

The deviation in the deviated nasal septum can be categorized into the following types:

• Type 1: slight deviation in vertical or horizontal direction. These are unilateral deviations.

• Type 2: vertical anterior deviation. These are unilateral deviations

• Type 3: Vertical posterior deviation. These are unilateral deviations

• Type 4: The septum becomes S-shaped

• Type 5: Horizontal spores on one side. There may or may not be distortion on the opposite side.

• Type 6: Similar to type 5 but with a groove on the concave surface. These are unilateral deviations.

• Type 7: a combination of any of the other types from type 2 to type 6

What are the causes of deviated nasal septum?

Generally, your deviated nasal septum may get deviated because of the following reasons:

• Injury or trauma especially when the impact is directly on the face

• Connective tissue diseases – are the kind of diseases that affects the tissues of the body negatively. These diseases include autoimmune diseases like:

o Rheumatoid arthritis

o Lupus

o scleroderma

 

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What are the symptoms and signs of deviated nasal septum?

Some of the noticeable signs and symptoms of a deviated nasal septum are:

• Difficulty in breathing from one or both the nostrils

• Poor drainage of the sinuses connecting with the nasal cavities

• Nasal congestion

• Headaches

• Sleep apnea

• Snoring

• Bloody noses

Note: In many cases, someone who has a deviated nasal septum may not experience any symptoms at all.

What kind of doctor fixes a deviated nasal septum?

For fixing a deviated nasal septum, you should consult the following doctors and specialists:

• Otolaryngologist (ENT specialist)

• Plastic surgeon: for fixing the deviated nasal septum

How is a deviated nasal septum diagnosed?

For the diagnosis of a deviated nasal septum, your doctor will perform a physical exam. In this:

The external nose is investigated: the external nose includes a visible component of the nose on the face

• The internal nose is investigated: internal nose includes the nasal cavity and the nostrils.

For these physical examinations, your doctor will use a nasal speculum to spread the nostrils. After that, a light is used to inspect the inside of the nose and the septum.

What is the treatment of deviated nasal septum?

Typically a deviated nasal septum is fixed surgically. Some key facts about this surgery you should know about include:

• For this surgery, a stay at the hospital is non-essential.

• The surgery is performed through the nostrils hence no external incisions are required

• The surgery takes about 1 to 2 hours to complete.

• If required, the surgery is combined with:

o Rhinoplasty and

o Sinus surgery

• Due to the surgery, there may be swelling. This may cause difficulty in breathing for a few weeks post-surgery.

Dr. Sumit Sharma

MBBS (ENT- Honours) (KGMC-Lucknow),
M.S. (KGMC- Lucknow), FAOI (AIIMS), FAOI (U.K.)

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