Nasal Obstruction
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Nasal Obstruction

One of the most common clinical problems I see are patients that have some degree of nasal obstruction. Nasal obstruction is also referred to as a deviated nasal septum. The nasal septum is a wall of bone and cartilage that separates the right nostril from the left nostril. More often than not, people with nasal obstruction issues feel that they do not have problems breathing through their nose. However, there are four key symptoms that ultimately point to nasal obstruction.   Nasal Obstruction Seattle

These symptoms are:

Facial Pain and Headaches
Excessive Snoring and Sleep Apnea
Recurrent Ear Infections, Dizziness
Sinus Infections

How Do I Treat Nasal Obstruction Problems?

First and foremost, I must determine whether there is a current sinus infection. I take a detailed history of your past and current problems and do a thorough nasal exam. I also often do a sinus x-ray to rule out a sinus infection. Those that do not have an active sinus infection are offered nasal steroid spray treatment, which is used to shrink the swelling inside the nose and ultimately open up the nasal passageways. Those that do not respond well to this treatment are offered sinus surgery options.

The Horrors of Nasal-Sinus Surgery-Fact or Fiction?
Patients often recount to me stories of people that have undergone nasal and sinus surgery and told them how awful an experience it was. The most common fears I hear are black and blue eyes, nasal disfigurement, nosebleeds, intolerable pain and "yards of packing" placed in the nose.

As a head and neck surgeon for the past 20 years I can assure you that these fears are fiction when it comes to my practice. In my hands this is a simple and straightforward procedure with minimal pain, minimal packing and minimal bleeding. I thoroughly discuss post operative expectations with patients prior to the surgery and answer any and all questions in order to alleviate the "fear of the unknown". My patients are also provided with written instructions and expectations prior to the surgery for them to refer to. The vast majority of my patients tell me after their surgery, "Thank you for making it so painless and simple."
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