Septoplasty / Rhinoplasty

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Septoplasty / Rhinoplasty

What is a septoplasty / rhinoplasty?

A septoplasty is the surgical straightening of the partition dividing the inside of the nose in half (the septum) to improve the nasal airway.
Rhinoplasty is the surgical alteration the outside shape of the nose. This is intended to improve airflow and cosmetics only.

My anaesthetic

This procedure will require an anaesthetic. See About your anaesthetic information sheet for information about anaesthetic and the risks involved. If you have any concerns, discuss these with your doctor.

If you have not been given an information sheet, please ask for one.

What are the risks of this specific procedure?

There are risks and complications with this procedure. They include but are not limited to the following:

General risks:
  • Infection can occur, requiring antibiotics and further treatment.
  • Bleeding could occur and may require a return to the operating room.
  • Small areas of the lung can collapse, increasing the risk of chest infection. This may need antibiotics and physiotherapy.
  • Death as a result of this procedure is possible.
Specific risks:
  • Bleeding. This may occur either at the time of the operation or in the first few weeks after the surgery. Bleeding after the surgery may require packing of the nose under local anaesthesia or may require another operation to stop the bleeding. A blood transfusion may be necessary depending on the amount of blood lost.
  • Persistence or recurrence of the original problem with an unsatisfactory cosmetic appearance or lack of sensation with the new cosmetic appearance of the nose.
  • Rhinoplasty may lead to a poor nasal airway which may require revision surgery in 10-20% of cases.
  • Abnormal healing of external wounds with abnormal scar formation.
  • Impaired or lost sense of smell and taste.
  • Adhesion or scar tissue forming inside the nose requiring further surgery.
  • Numbness of the top lip and/or upper front teeth.
  • CSF leaks/orbital haematoma (bruising)/septal abscess.
  • May cause increase in snoring or sleep disturbance. Septal perforation or hole in the partition inside the nose. This is often asymptomatic but may result in whistling, crusting or bleeding and may require further surgery to close the hole. This applies to the septoplasty only.

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