I Want to Straighten my Nose, but is There a Risk of Breaking my Septum During Surgery?

What are the risks of breaking the septum during surgery (if the surgery is performed in order to straighten the nose)?

Doctor Answers 4

Want to straighten my nose but what's risk of breaking the septum?

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 I'm not certain why you're concerned about breaking the septum if you're nasal bones are broken to straighten the nose during a Rhinoplasty?  The septum may not need to be manipulated when breaking the nasal bones but if the center section, of the nose is twisted, the septum may need to be cut or modified.  IMHO, this is a minor issue and less invasive than breaking the nasal bones themselves.  Manipulating the septum, as you may already know, does require some form of nasal packing where a Rhinoplasty by itself does not, IMO.  When the septum is manipulated, I use a small piece of telfa packing in each nostril overnight. 

Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 28 reviews

Septal fracture during rhinoplasty can be avoided

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The septum is susceptible to fracture if there has been a prior accidental septal fracture, if the septum is narrowed  excessively, or more easily with some techniques.  I always teach surgeons to avoid dissecting from the top edge of the septum down (as is often done in open rhinoplasty), but rather to leave the bridge undissected--which is safer.  Let the nose heal solidly after an accident before operating, and be wary of hidden septal fractures.

Using these precautions, septal fractures should be very uncommon--in the range of 0.04%.

Mark B. Constantian, MD, FACS
Nashua Plastic Surgeon

Rhinoplasty surgery to Straighten Nose

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A deviated nose most likely has an associated deviated septum. The septum is a sheet of cartilage & bone that is the foundation of the nose and contributes greatly to its appearance. As a result, the septum would most likely require some surgery (ie. possibly breaking) in order to improve the symmetry of the nose. Potential risks include but are not limited to bleeding, infection, and scar among many risk. Only after a comprehensive evaluation can a rhinoplasty surgeon help determine appropriate options for you. Best of luck.

Dr. Chaboki


Houtan Chaboki, MD
Washington DC Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 89 reviews

Nose Surgery, Rhinoplasty

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If you have a deviated nose, your septum, could also be a contibutory factor or not. During straightening of your nasal bone, it may become necessary to reset your septum (septoplasty) or remove the twisted/curved/angulated septum (submucous resection). If the operation is performed by a certified plastic surgeon, there is minimal risk to damage your septum and you may be rewarded by significant improvement in your breatrhing pattern and the shape of your nose is going to improve. 

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.