Septoplasty is an operation performed to straighten the partition between the nostrils (septum) by trimming and refashioning cartilage and bone.

A septoplasty is usually performed to improve the nasal airway and can also allow for better access for nasal sprays.  It may be performed as part of a septorhinoplasty (“nose job”) or to provide access for surgery to the sinuses (endoscopic sinus surgery).  Turbinate trimming and/or cautery may also be indicated at the same time especially if you have allergies.


  • Packing of the nose is uncommonly required but if inserted may remain in for 24-48 hours.
  • There is usually mild pain only – Paracetamol should be sufficient in most cases.
  • Gentle nose blowing only to clear loose clots and mucous.
  • A bloodstained mucous discharge and nasal blockage is common for 2-3 weeks.  It is due to local reaction with swelling and production of mucous.  Sleeping with head elevated may help.  It may take 6 weeks to clear completely.
  • Use a nasal spray or drops if prescribed by your surgeon and try to breathe through your nose as much as possible.
  • Saline douche will help to clear clots and mucous.  Advice regarding saline douche will be provided.
  • Avoid strenuous activity for 3 weeks.  Lifting and straining may precipitate bleeding.
  • Clean nostrils with cotton buds gently.  Use antibiotic ointment if prescribed.
  • Take antibiotics if prescribed.
  • Black eyes are not expected with this procedure.
  • Dissolvable stitches occasionally appear from the nostrils.  Do not attempt to pull these out.



If you think that you may need a septoplasty, please call 031 201 3118 for an appointment. A complete history will be taken,  and a thorough examination will be conducted to determine whether a septoplasty is indicated. Best ENT specialist practice guidelines will be followed at all times.




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