A septoplasty is an operation to correct problems with the nasal septum, the piece of cartilage (gristle) and bone that separates the two sides of the nasal cavity.
A bend in your septum, caused by a nose injury or the way it has grown over time, can block your nose. This can make it more difficult for you to breathe through one or both nostrils, and cause symptoms such as frequent nosebleeds and loud breathing when you're sleeping.
Septoplasty surgery can help by straightening out your septum, or removing any parts that are causing a blockage.
Our patients are at the heart of what we do and we want you to be in control of your care. To us, that means you can choose the consultant you want to see, and when you want. They'll be with you every step of the way.
All of our consultants are of the highest calibre and benefit from working in our modern, well-equipped hospitals.
Our consultants have high standards to meet, often holding specialist NHS posts and delivering expertise in complex sub-specialty surgeries. Many of our consultants have international reputations for their research in their specialised field.
You will have a formal consultation with a healthcare professional. During this time you will be able to explain your medical history, symptoms and raise any concerns that you might have.
We will also discuss with you whether any further diagnostic tests, such as scans or blood tests, are needed. Any additional costs will be discussed before further tests are carried out.
We've tried to make your experience with us as easy and relaxed as possible.
For more information on visiting hours, our food, what to pack if you're staying with us, parking and all those other important practicalities, please visit our patient information pages.
Our dedicated team will also give you tailored advice to follow in the run up to your visit.
We understand that having surgery can potentially be a time of anxiety and worry. Our experienced and caring medical staff will be there for you, holding your hand, every step of the way.
A septoplasty is usually performed under general anaesthesia, which means you will be asleep throughout the procedure and will feel no pain.
During the operation, the surgeon will make an incision inside your nose to one side of the septum. The inner lining of your nose is lifted away from the cartilage and bone. The surgeon can then straighten the septum, or remove any parts that are causing obstruction. Once this has been done, the lining is replaced and stitched in place.
The procedure usually takes up to 40 minutes, depending on how much work your surgeon needs to do on the septum.
Septoplasty is usually performed as an overnight procedure. After the procedure, you will be taken from the operating theatre to a recovery room, where you will come round from the anaesthesia under close supervision.
After this, you will be taken to your room or comfortable area where you can rest and recuperate until we feel you’re ready to go home.
If you need them, continue taking painkillers as advised by the hospital.
After septoplasty surgery, your nose will feel blocked for about three days, and there may be some numbness on the tip of your nose or your upper lip. This is almost always temporary. Very occasionally, there may be bruising around the lower part of the eyes, which will settle naturally.
Follow your surgeon’s advice about returning to work and leisure activities. Most people are able to return to work one to two weeks after the operation.
Once you’re ready to be discharged from hospital, you’ll need to arrange a taxi, friend or family member to take you home as general anaesthesia can temporarily affect your co-ordination and reasoning skills, so you should not drive, drink alcohol, operate machinery or sign legal documents for 48 hours afterwards.
Even after you’ve left hospital, we’re still looking after you every step of the way.
Typically your consultant will want to see you after your treatment to see how you’re doing; a follow up appointment will be made for you before you leave the hospital.
On rare occasions, complications following septoplasty surgery can occur. If you experience any of these symptoms – bleeding that doesn’t stop within ten to 15 minutes, inability to drink normally which can lead to dehydration, a raised temperature or increasing pain – call us straight away.
We will talk to you about the possible risks and complications of having this procedure.
If you have any questions or concerns, we’re ready to help.
We are committed to delivering excellent individual care and customer service across our network of hospitals, clinics and specialist care centres around the UK. Our dedicated and highly trained team aim to achieve consistently excellent results. For us it's more than just treating patients, it's about looking after people.
The treatment described on this page may be adapted to meet your individual needs, so it's important to follow your healthcare professional's advice and raise any questions that you may have with them.
We have excellent road links to the M1 and A1(M), and are five minutes from Harpenden train station.
COVID-19 testing or antibody tests are not available as a standalone service at Spire Harpenden Hospital.