Can a Rough Exam with a Speculum During ENT Visit Contribute to Nasal Valve Collapse?

I recently went for a follow up to an ENT doctor after bumping my nose. Everything was fine - just mild deviated septum. But the day after that exam, I began to notice the walls of my nose going in quite substantially when breathing in. Now I am concerned the exam contributed to a nasal collapse or another issue.

Doctor Answers 1

Causes of Nasal Valve Collapse

Nasal valve collapse occurs when the negative pressure created when breathing exceeds the structural strength of the nasal sidewalls to resist.  The more narrow the airway, the greater the negative pressure.  In your case, the trauma likely has resulted in a new septal deviation or swelling that has narrowed the airway to the point that this negative pressure is now too great. Potentially, a rough exam could stimulate more swelling and make the collapse worse but this would be temporary.  Give it some time for the swelling to subside and go for a recheck if not better.

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