Deviated Septum Surgery Question- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Deviated Septum Surgery Question

    All,

    Just got back from the ENT. My left nostril is 98% blocked and my right is partially blocked. Based on my almost complete blockage, the doc said he was 99% confident that my breathing will improve with the surgery.

    I focused my questions on the risks vs. the benefits because I'm fairly certain that I'm sold on being able to breath better and (hopefully) stop being such a mouth breather.

    My question here is for people who have had a Septoplasty that wasn't successful.

    a) Did you go back in for a 2nd procedure? After the 2nd procedure, did your breathing improve?

    b) Did anyone's septum perforate? If so, what have the impacts of the perforation been?

    c) Are there any other risks that I should be concerned about?
    JPark - 3.5- don't listen to dremer

  2. #2
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    $10,000 later.......

    No, I did not go back because my snoring was back a few years later. Do your research, the procedure does not last.

    Mine did not perforate.

    Well they do have to put you under and it is a bit uncomfortable during recovery.


    Now, here is my suggestion. Look for a doctor that may be performing a case study on sleeping disorders. If you can't, then you will just have to pay. The reason this is important is because if you can find one:

    a. you will get paid for your particpation.
    b. you are a number and the insurance company will never know your name.
    3. you may get to keep the CPAP machine.

    That CPAP machine has been a god send. My snoring is non existent and I get great sleep. I am not tired in the afternoons or while driving. I also have acid reflux and the air keeps the acid from coming up. My wife is very happy now.

  3. #3
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    Yeah but....

    Quote Originally Posted by YaMon View Post
    No, I did not go back because my snoring was back a few years later. Do your research, the procedure does not last.

    Mine did not perforate.

    Well they do have to put you under and it is a bit uncomfortable during recovery.


    Now, here is my suggestion. Look for a doctor that may be performing a case study on sleeping disorders. If you can't, then you will just have to pay. The reason this is important is because if you can find one:

    a. you will get paid for your particpation.
    b. you are a number and the insurance company will never know your name.
    3. you may get to keep the CPAP machine.

    That CPAP machine has been a god send. My snoring is non existent and I get great sleep. I am not tired in the afternoons or while driving. I also have acid reflux and the air keeps the acid from coming up. My wife is very happy now.
    I don't have sleep apnea, I have a deviated septum due to breaking my nose several times. I only snore at night when I'm congested, I've had too much beer or I'm overweight.

    I *think* have done my research. The surgery doesn't take in 20% of people. Which is why I'm asking for specific advice from people who fall in that 20% and have elected for a 2nd surgery.
    JPark - 3.5- don't listen to dremer

  4. #4
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    Ok.....

    I had the surgery, for primarily my snoring. I also had lazer surgery on the back of my mouth at the same time. It did not improve my breathing permanently. It felt great afterwards and maybe for the next year, but was back to normal after that.

    Hope your situation turns out differently.

  5. #5
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    I have had three separate sinus surgeries. My sinuses were blocked due to the deviated Septum (kick to the nose in Soccer) plus really enlarged Turbinates leading to frequent infections due to poor drainage. In the first surgery we addressed my deviated Septum and Turbinates. While this helped, it did not address all the issues. A couple of years later I went in for two more procedures and it was found that my Septum had re-deviated though not as bad as before. It was re-corrected. Breathing through my nose is completely open still 10 years later.

    This is not a comfortable procedure at all. You will have gauze packing crammed up in your nose for the first few days and it does not feel good coming out. This is followed by going in to the doc weekly to have the coagulated blood vacuumed out. You then need to rinse, gently, with the Neti pot as well as cramming a q-tip up there with antibiotic ointment to keep things lubricated while healing. Worse of all is there is no escaping the pain that is right smack dab in the middle of your face. Now, my experience may be more extreme than others as I had multiple procedures combined into one surgery.

    Was it worth it? 100% yes......

  6. #6
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    Ahh , those wonderful memories.

    Quote Originally Posted by spec306 View Post
    I have had three separate sinus surgeries. My sinuses were blocked due to the deviated Septum (kick to the nose in Soccer) plus really enlarged Turbinates leading to frequent infections due to poor drainage. In the first surgery we addressed my deviated Septum and Turbinates. While this helped, it did not address all the issues. A couple of years later I went in for two more procedures and it was found that my Septum had re-deviated though not as bad as before. It was re-corrected. Breathing through my nose is completely open still 10 years later.

    This is not a comfortable procedure at all. You will have gauze packing crammed up in your nose for the first few days and it does not feel good coming out. This is followed by going in to the doc weekly to have the coagulated blood vacuumed out. You then need to rinse, gently, with the Neti pot as well as cramming a q-tip up there with antibiotic ointment to keep things lubricated while healing. Worse of all is there is no escaping the pain that is right smack dab in the middle of your face. Now, my experience may be more extreme than others as I had multiple procedures combined into one surgery.

    Was it worth it? 100% yes......
    I cannot believe they could pack that much gauze up into my nose. That vacuum felt great afterwards.

  7. #7
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    Perfect, thanks...

    Quote Originally Posted by spec306 View Post
    I have had three separate sinus surgeries. My sinuses were blocked due to the deviated Septum (kick to the nose in Soccer) plus really enlarged Turbinates leading to frequent infections due to poor drainage. In the first surgery we addressed my deviated Septum and Turbinates. While this helped, it did not address all the issues. A couple of years later I went in for two more procedures and it was found that my Septum had re-deviated though not as bad as before. It was re-corrected. Breathing through my nose is completely open still 10 years later.

    This is not a comfortable procedure at all. You will have gauze packing crammed up in your nose for the first few days and it does not feel good coming out. This is followed by going in to the doc weekly to have the coagulated blood vacuumed out. You then need to rinse, gently, with the Neti pot as well as cramming a q-tip up there with antibiotic ointment to keep things lubricated while healing. Worse of all is there is no escaping the pain that is right smack dab in the middle of your face. Now, my experience may be more extreme than others as I had multiple procedures combined into one surgery.

    Was it worth it? 100% yes......
    Thanks for the feedback. I'm not expecting the procedure to be rainbows and ponies but rather something that I need to have done.
    JPark - 3.5- don't listen to dremer

  8. #8
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    Cant you just pick it out/
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  9. #9
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    I know a few people who've had their septums removed completely. It didn't seem to bother them.

  10. #10
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    I had it done, my breathing on my right was almost non existent and the left side was closing up rather quickly. I had to go back a couple more times because their was more tissue further up that was also causing some breathing problems.

    The procedure is over pretty quick too so you wont have to be stuck in hospital too long.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stripes View Post
    Interesting. I've had breathing problems but had a CT scan. There's nothing in my head: no deviated septum nor any structural nor polyps.

    One of my friends had it. He's really glad he did and that was a few years ago.

    Do you know if you have any allergies? From the result of my CT scan (and my constant sinus infections and most recently ear infection), allergy testing and shots are what looks like my path.

    Curious to anyone who's had both the deviated septum or other sinus surgery and done allergy shots.
    In addition to all the mechanical issues that were addressed by surgery, I also got allergy shots. The allergies were definitely a contributing factor to the frequent sinus infections. The surgery provided an open airway so all the drainage from the allergies could drain out rather than pooling up in the sinus cavities getting infected.

    Allergy shots did help; however, they are a LONG term commitment -- it may take you a year or more of regular weekly shots before you notice a reduction in your allergies. Even then you continue with the shots for another year or so....

  12. #12
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    I just had it done 2 weeks ago. My septum was deviated, there was a cartiledge spur on one side and they cut back the nasal lining. According to my doc, if they do the nasal lining tissue with a laser its more likely to come back. He still does things with some specialty scalpel and has much better success. I can tell a huge difference already but I'm still healing obviously. Recovery was pretty bad for me - ended up in the ER late at night with infection and non-stop bleeding. After that passed, the recovery wasn't so bad.

    DM

  13. #13
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    I'm blocked on both sides, went to the ENT. He described the procedure and I decided I didn't feel like going through with it... Yet... My nose is really crooked and insurance won't cover the straightening out of the broken bone and I want to get it all done in one shot.
    I used breathe right strips for a bit but after a few weeks I started having nightmares that consisted of bugs crawling around on my nose which ruined that little trick..
    Last edited by dirtdan; 08-09-2011 at 08:10 AM.

  14. #14
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    i had it. though, the solid bones of my nose were crooked too, so that turned it into somewhat of a nosejob. i had one nostril 3/4 blocked, and the other was TOO wide open, so i was always getting dryness issues.

    surgery hurt like a ***** and i had a cast for 10 days. but keep in mind, i had more than just the septum done.

    i was back to mountain biking a month post-op. the beautiful thing was, there was still old blood clots up my nose which disslodged during the ride and i was hacking them up.

    my breathing is much more "even" and insurance had no trouble covering mine.

    i'll be honest too, part of why i'm glad i had it done was the fact that my nose LOOKS better and less crooked. but thats just a vanity thing

  15. #15
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    I'm about two months out of surgery and have to say it's definitely worth it. The recovery sucked! Two weeks after surgery when they took the splints out was the turning point for me. The first week plan on doing a bunch of nothing and take the pain pills they prescribe. I felt great the day after and then day 2 I was hurting...I still blow out some huge chunks of scab and whatnot...just 2 days ago I blew out a scab the size of a nickel about 6-7mm thick! Definitely can breath so much better and haven't had an infection since...I've had chronic infections for about 8 years.

  16. #16
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    I've had the surgery and my breathing has been great since then - had it done in 2007 so its been four years............I've noticed better breathing while cycling, backpacking and swimming, all of which I've done in serious amounts............my snoring wasn't cured but as for the tissue growing back, it's not something that I've noticed - everything seems to be real clear still............this makes me think that you should check out a number of doctors who perform this procedure before you go through it the first time or a second - my doctor specialized in this procedure and the results are great..........
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  17. #17
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    I had this surgery over 15 years ago in my mid-20s. I saw an ENT(?) as part of an eval for process for chronic, low-grade headaches and he said because of some blockage I had, a nasal septoplasty might help with the headaches. Miserable recovery (as others have mentioned)- I think lasers were in practice at that time but this MD was a hack and sew guy. The pain during the 2 weeks was excruciating and I found out why a few years later - I had a bone spur that made the tissue around it very sensitive, and the gauze packing put consistent pressure in it! I was later told that the surgeon should have recognized the spur and removed it during the surgery.

    Anyhow, I can't say whether the surgery improved my breathing because it wasn't a problem to begin with. Years later, I get occasional nose bleeds on the side that got the most attention and it is pretty blocked. Turbinates grow back, apparently, and I suspect that I have some perforation of the septum causing the bleeding. I have a consult for an ENT but haven't had time to follow-up. I use Breathe-Right strips at night to improve breathing and they really help and result in more restful sleep.

    I'm not answering your question, OP, but I'd say get a second opinion and ask specific questions about surgical methods, experience, the name and experience of the anesthesiologist, and whether any trainees would be involved in the surgery.
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  18. #18
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    Thanks all...

    I appreciate the feedback and the advice.

    Cheers,

    Ken
    JPark - 3.5- don't listen to dremer

  19. #19
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    Update, for those that care....

    I had my surgery last Thursday. After the doc pulled the packing out post op, I could immediately tell the difference in air flow through my nose. Recovery sucks. You can't blow your nose, you're supposed to limit your sneezing (with a nose full of bloody boogers) and you're supposed to remain as upright as you can. Sleeping was tough the first couple of nights.

    I had the splints removed this morning. I'm now hyperventilating. I don't remember a time when I could breath this well. I go in next week for another checkup and for the doc to clean more scabs out of my nose. I'm hoping to be cleared for cardio next week and back to lifting/gym a week or so after that.

    Recovery: As you all mentioned, it sucks. I was worn out, irritable, lethargic and tired from Thursday until yesterday. I feel much better today.

    The only other negative thus far is that the procedure hit a nerve for my upper teeth and just under my nose. So the top of my mouth right at my tooth line is numb. The doc says this happens sometimes and the nerve will repair itself in the next couple of weeks.

    Edit to add: Another thing to be aware of: Constipation. Based on my diet and exercise program, my GI works like clockwork. I didn't have a BM for 3 days after the surgery resulting in me feeling full and compacted. Apparently the anesthesia that they used (and the post op Vicodin) causes constipation.


    My left nasal passage was 100% block from multiple broken noses. Right now it's not 100% open but it's exponentially better than it was last week at this time. I'm looking forward to not being such a mouth breather on the singletrack.

    Ken
    Last edited by Ken in KC; 08-29-2011 at 11:21 AM.
    JPark - 3.5- don't listen to dremer

  20. #20
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    I forgot about the constipation...that bad sucked! I also had the numbness above my teeth and it took 3-4 weeks before it got better and probably 6-8 weeks before I didn't notice it anymore. If you got instruction to do a nasal flush do it about 5 times a day...it helped me a bunch!

  21. #21
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    I suggest snorting cocaine.
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  22. #22
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    I had a Septoplasty about 5 years ago, for ongoing breathing problems. The pain wasn't too bad, recovery was sort of funny with stuff being pulled out of my nose, very much like described in the other post.

    the surgery greatly improved my breathing, but sadly that effect didn't last; noticed it getting problematic again after maybe 2 or 3 years. Now, my breathing problems are worse than they ever were - not sure if I'd want to have surgery again TBH

  23. #23
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    I had turbinate reduction, septoplasty and whatever the procedure is called where the open the airway up into your 6 sinus cavities. Frankly, the surgery and recovery sucked royally. The 10 days post-op were akin to the worst sinus infection youíve ever had due to the splints. When they came out and the surgery residue was vacuumed out, I felt immediately better and would compare it to having a turbo on the front of my nose.

    Thus far, itís been life-changing for me to be able to breath clear and not have constant sinus infections. I no longer have nasal drainage and the constant throat clearing. It has been as transformational for me as lasik was for my vision a few years ago.

    Good luck. But get your kind right for the surgery. Hereís a shot of the splints coming out...


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  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim311 View Post
    I suggest snorting cocaine.
    This was probably not the best long term advice health wise, but probably resulted in some much more interesting stories. Any updates?

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