Introducing: Ask a Doctor
At UTHSC ENT, we understand that patients need clear, helpful answers to their questions. We also know that a flood of new information can be overwhelming.
That’s why our department’s introducing Ask a Doctor: an ongoing series of posts that tackle Frequently Asked Questions about common issues. We hope these articles give you a better understanding of your situation and an easy path to treatment.
First up: the deviated septum!
Prepared by: Chad Nieri
Reviewed by: Dr. Sanjeet Rangarajan
What is a deviated septum?
The septum is a bony, cartilaginous barrier between the left and right sides of the nose. Generally, the septum should be in the center of the nose, giving an equal size & shape to the left and right nostrils.
However, if the septum is not in the center, a deviated septum can occur. It’s important to remember that deviated septums are an extremely common diagnosis and fully treatable.
Causes and symptoms
There are a few common causes for a deviated septum: 1) congenital (present at birth) or 2) direct trauma (and injury that affects the structure of the nose).
Symptoms include (but are not limited to):
-Blockage of one or both nostrils (most common)
-Trouble breathing of one or both nostrils
-Frequent sinus infections
-Noisy breathing during sleep
First, some treatment options are simply aimed managing symptoms. For example:
1) Decongestants (and/or nasal sprays): reduce nasal tissue inflammation & swelling to help with drainage and opening the nasal airway.
2) Antihistamines: prevent allergy related symptoms, such as a runny or stuffy nose.
Next, there are surgical treatments available if symptoms persist. These can include:
1) Septoplasty: the nasal septum is straightened and repositioned to be in the center of your nose.
2) Rhinoplasty: additionally, this may be performed during a septoplasty to modify the shape and size of the nose.
Are there potential complications?
Generally, a septoplasty is considered a very safe procedure–complications are rare. Still, we want you to have as much information before a procedure as possible!
So, potential risks of a septoplasty include:
-Excessive bleeding (most common)
-Persistence of nasal obstructive symptoms
-Decrease in sense of smell
-Upper teeth and lip numbness
How can our Dream Team help?
UTHSC ENT’s Dream Team provides world class treatment in your hometown, especially for common issues like deviated septums.
Dr. Raj Dedhia, our director of facial plastic surgery, is a renowned expert in septoplasty and rhinoplasty.
If you have syptoms of a deviated septum, Dr. Raj Dedhia should be your first call! Schedule your consultation today: (901) 866-8384
Schedule Your Appointment:
Raj Dedhia, M.D.
Director, Facial Plastic Surgery
UT Otolaryngology East
1068 Cresthaven Road Suite
Memphis, TN 38119
Make an appointment: