What is a Deviated Septum?
A deviated septum is when the bone and cartilage that divide the nasal cavity in half are significantly off center or crooked and make breathing difficult. People can either be born with this condition or it can develop as result of injury or trauma to the nose.
A nasal fracture or broken nose is one example of an injury or trauma to the nose. Occurring most during contact sports, physical altercations, vehicle accidents and falls, this condition will cause difficulty breathing in addition to pain, swelling, bleeding, bruising, misshapen nose and discharge of mucous.
Diagnosing a Deviated Septum
A deviated septum and broken nose are typically easy for a doctor to diagnose. They will physically examine the area and look inside the nose. Anesthetics may be used to make you more comfortable during the exam. Imaging is typically not needed, but a computerized tomography (CT) scan may be recommended if injury or trauma makes a physical exam impossible.
A broken nose may be realigned manually; however, a deviated septum and broken nose may require surgery to reset the misalignment. If you or someone you care for is experiencing symptoms of a deviated septum or nasal fracture, please contact our North Sioux City office at (605) 217-4327 to schedule an appointment.