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Nasal Obstruction 101: Discussing Possible Surgical Treatments

Nasal obstruction is any blockage in the nasal passage that prevents the regular amount of air from passing through the nostrils. This problem occurs either due to anatomic abnormalities of normal structures in the nose, or due to inflammatory processes that may lead to swelling of the nasal passages. The most common causes of nasal obstruction include nasal valve collapse, nasal septum deviation, nasal polyps, nasal turbinate hypertrophy, and adenoid hypertrophy. Chronic sinusitis, nasal allergens, and irritants can also cause nasal airway obstruction. Post diagnosis, ENT physicians discuss treatment options for the patients. In certain cases, surgical treatment is the only option available. Taking the discussion further, we focus on the surgical treatment options for nasal airway obstruction.

Endoscopic Sinus Surgery

Endoscopic Sinus Surgery is minimally invasive and helps to produce immediate results with less recovery time. In this kind of surgical procedure that is meant to correct or remove nasal obstructions, ENT Physicians in Houston or any other part of Texas, insert an endoscope into the nose. They, therefore, have access to an inside view of the sinuses. The endoscope allows the surgeons to remove small amounts of bone or other material blocking the sinus openings as well as polyps of the mucous membrane. As a result, narrow nasal passages are enlarged and thereby, increase the airflow into the nose, and there is proper drainage of the sinuses.

Turbinate Reduction

The procedure of Turbinate Reduction helps to correct nasal turbinate hypertrophy by decreasing the size of enlarged turbinates. This surgical treatment involves making a small incision inside the nose at the front of the turbinate, sliding an instrument under the lining, besides trimming down excess swollen tissue. Once this instrument is removed, the thinned lining heals back onto the bone. In addition, Turbinate Reduction is commonly integrated with a repositioning of the bone outwards to the side of the nose, therefore, allowing more space in the airway. In some cases, where the turbinate enlargement is more severe, the turbinate bone and some mucosa of the turbinate is removed to perform a greater reduction. Patients who have failed a conservative turbinate reduction and still have nasal obstruction, may benefit from a more aggressive inferior medial flap turbinoplasty.

Further Read: Endoscopic Sinus Surgery vs. Non-invasive Procedures: An Overview


This quick operation is meant to remove the adenoids, i.e. small tissue lumps at the back of the nose, behind the palate. In this simple, surgical procedure, there is the removal of the enlarged adenoid tissue; blocking the airway, through the mouth without making any external incisions. The ENT Physician inserts a small instrument into the mouth to prop it open. They then remove the adenoids by using a curette and then cauterizing the base of excised adenoid tissue. Cauterizing and packing the area with absorbent material helps to control bleeding during and after Adenoidectomy.


ENT surgeons consider Septoplasty in case the deviated septum obstructs nasal passages; preventing proper airflow through the nose. In such cases, the straightening or reconstruction of the septum permits the nasal passages to open and function in a normal manner. In Septoplasty, the surgeon makes the incision inside the nose. The normal lining of the nose that lies over the septum is elevated and preserved and the crooked parts of the septum is removed. This lining is then laid back and stitched in place. The surgeon also takes care to leave some major supporting areas of cartilage and bone unharmed so that there is no sagging of the tip or bridge of the nose.


Surgery happens to be the most effective nasal obstruction treatment option. When medications (like nasal steroid sprays) and other therapies fail to produce the desired results or when there is an existence of structural abnormalities, surgery can bring about life-changing improvements; offering significant relief from recurring symptoms of nasal obstruction. If you are looking for more information on nasal obstruction and its treatments, book an appointment with one of our ENT physicians in Houston.

We’re here to help

If you are frustrated by frequent sinus infections, persistent nasal congestion, or other sinus symptoms, Dr. Arjuna Kuperan and the team at Houston Advanced Nose & Sinus can help. Contact us today with any questions or to schedule your consultation.

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