What is a septal perforation?
The nasal septum is a wall that splits the nose into two nasal cavities located behind each nostril. The nasal septal wall allows for streamlined airflow from the nostrils into the throat. A nasal septal perforation occurs when a hole develops in this septal wall, creating one unified cavity. Streamlined airflow is interrupted and chaotic, causing symptoms of nasal dryness, inflammation, infection, bleeding, and crusting. Lee Ann M. Klausner, M.D. is an experienced surgeon in septal perforation repair, having trained under Dr. Russell Kridel, with a very high success rate in closing septal perforations. As a nasal septal perforation repair specialist, she has the experience and knowledge to treat you at the Klausner Institute in New York, NY.
What are symptoms of a septal perforation?
Symptoms of septal perforation can be very debilitating. The nasal septum normally is a solid wall that divides the nose into two cavities. Normally, this wall allows for streamlined airflow through the nose into the throat to reach the lungs. When there is a hole in the nasal septum (a septal perforation), airflow into the nose is disrupted. When the normal nasal airflow is disrupted, symptoms of nasal obstruction, chronic nasal dryness, nasal and sinus soreness, chronic nasal and sinus infection, frequent nasal bleeding, nasal crusting, and even whistling can occur. Some patient’s chronic infections that originate at the site of septal perforation extend to affect the sinuses and in severe cases can lead to bronchitis and pneumonia. Patients tend to deal with these symptoms on a daily basis, which has a negative impact on their quality of life. Even the quality of an individual’s sleep can be harmed by the nasal obstruction caused by a septal perforation.
What are the benefits of septal perforation repair?
There are many reasons people choose septal perforation repair at the Klausner Institute. Patients can improve their quality of life by resolving or greatly improving their debilitating symptoms and once again having a nose that functions normally. Septal perforation repair can also help prevent serious long-term consequences like infection, bronchitis, and pneumonia. Our patients breathe better, sleep better, and feel better after septal perforation repair.
Who is a candidate for septal perforation repair?
A septal perforation can present itself in a number of ways that can be uncomfortable and affect your quality of life. Ideal candidates for surgery have symptoms of nasal obstruction, dryness, crusting and inflammation, recurrent sinus infections, and/or bleeding. Dr. Klausner will perform a health assessment to determine if you are a good candidate for surgery. Patients must have realistic expectations about the procedure and how it works beforehand. We have had excellent results repairing septal perforations in people of all needs and backgrounds.
Septal Perforation Repair Reviews
"Lee Ann is kind, thoughtful, empathetic and ultimately the best doctor I've ever worked with. I came to her after a 10 year search for a practitioner that could also dual as a healer for an issue I had suffered with, being a perforated septum due to a previous invasive surgery that had gotten larger over time. I had seen many ENT's throughout this search, most with doubts they could help my condition, all with little to no suggestion of ways to alleviate my discomfort. Throughout the entire process with Lee Ann my concerns were not only alleviated, but she did so thoughtfully and honestly. I was given a regiment that subdued the affects of my condition almost immediately, and over time I came to trust her ability to heal me. In July 2020 I underwent septal perforation surgery which was intense and deeply transformational. I was not aware of how much I was suffering until I came out the other side. Now I would recommend her to anyone seeking any type of reconstructive surgery, because it takes someone unique with brilliant character to hold space for your healing every step of the way. Even through the COVID19 crisis, Lee Ann gave me the most unique and heartfelt experience that has ultimately changed my life and the way I view myself. I no longer think about my past condition on an hour to hour basis, and I feel full and complete as if I hadn't been suffering for how long I had. To say I appreciate her is a great understatement. I absolutely suggest a consultation with her if you are looking for a healer in human form."- M. / Google / Dec 15, 2020
"I am someone who does tons of research before picking doctors- especially ones who would potentially do surgery on me- which is how I found Dr. Klausner 7 years ago. Dr. Klausner is the best Doctor I've seen, to this day. After chronic sinusitis, I had a septoplasty and rhinoplasty with Dr. Klausner- 7 years later, I have had one sinus infection since in the same year, and never again. What makes Dr. Klausner remarkable, however, is that she isn't just an expert at what she does regularly- she has a massive breadth of knowledge that lead her to be the first Doctor, after seeing six others previously, to diagnose a rare skin condition I've had since childhood. She not only diagnosed it- she gave me the first treatment that ever worked. As someone who has been to the Mayo Clinic for a different rare disease, I cannot tell you the value, and peace that comes with a diagnosis. Or the rarity of a doctor who can give one. My younger sister also had chronic sinusitis, and was a patient of Dr. Klausner's for the same surgery. My sister made a mistake in her post-operative care, and Dr. Klausner rushed from a ways away to treat her. At the start of the pandemic, my sister and I visited Dr. Klausner after she continued to have some sinus infections. Dr. Klausner figured out they were travel-related (my sister is back and forth from Europe) and found a solution that didn't compromise on the travel. My sister hasn't had a sinus infection since. I've been to plenty of so-called "greedy doctors." With them, you get nothing, for a lot of surprise bills. That doesn't describe Dr. Klausner at all. She is the best of her class, and my sister and I feel lucky to have a Doctor we can trust so much going forward. My other sister, who is in Medical School, remarked that she expected the surgeons she works with to be like Dr. Klausner and they all fall flat. You will be disappointed going elsewhere."- N.S. / Google / Nov 15, 2020
"Dr. Klausner is seriously a wonder woman! She changed my life and successfully completed a surgery that multiple other doctors said wasn't possible. Not only is Dr. Klausner an outstanding surgeon and doctor, but she truly takes the time to explain everything to her patients. During my initial consultation she spent an hour and a half with my mother and I explaining everything and making sure I was comfortable. Thank you Dr. Klausner for changing my life for the better!! If you ever need plastic surgery (especially septal perforation surgery) Dr. Klausner is your girl!"- M.-. / Google / Apr 15, 2020
"So grateful that I found Dr. Klausner. She is an amazing doctor and person. After going to numerous doctors/surgeons for my large nasal perforation and saddling she was the only one who listened and diagnosed my problem. She gave me a detailed plan on how to proceed. She was very empathetic, kind and patient through the entire process. My surgery was extremely complicated but I'm happy to report a success! No other surgeon wanted to help me as they all said it was not possible to close such a large perforation. Dr. Klausner did it!!! She has truly changed my life!"- TR / Office Visit / Oct 16, 2021
"Dr. Klausner is a fantastic surgeon and I'm so glad I found her! I first saw her in 2021 for a consult and needed to take some time to think about going through with the surgery proposed (septoplasty, turbinate reduction, fracture repairs) and explore other options. I ended up going back to Dr. Klausner in 2022 because I felt she was the best out there and I needed this surgery. She is extremely detailed in her notes and explained every little detail to me, which I appreciate. Post-op she took the time to check in and make sure I was okay and even called me at night when she knew I was feeling nauseous. I also had weekly office visits to ensure I was healing properly and we’re both very happy with the results. Overall she's a compassionate and skilled doctor and I would recommend her to anyone."- J.S. / Google / Nov 11, 2022
What causes a septal perforation?
Septal perforation may be associated with events, such as complications from emergency medical or surgical procedures, a complication of routine deviated septum surgery, and nasal trauma. However, it is also linked to the abuse of recreational drugs that are inhaled through the nostril, most notably cocaine. Septal perforations can be caused by chronic nasal picking and chronic use of over-the-counter nasal decongestants, such as oxymetazoline/phenylephrine (Afrin®/ Neo-sinephrine®). Cocaine and these topical over-the-counter nasal decongestants cause chronic constriction of the blood vessels nourishing the septal membranes and cause the membranes to die from lack of oxygen to the tissues. Some septal perforations are associated with underlying autoimmune conditions. Septal perforations can become larger over time due to continued picking to remove septal crusting and recurrent bleeding. If the septal perforation becomes too large, it can cause worsening of symptoms and collapse of the nasal bridge/nose called a saddle nose deformity. Perforation repair is indicated in patients who have symptoms and who may be at risk of nasal collapse.
What does a septal perforation repair entail?
The process of perforation repair depends on the size of the perforation and on its location. The septal perforation is a hole in three layers: mucosal membrane on the right and left side of the septum, and cartilage and bone in between the membranes; therefore, repair to close the perforation must be done in three layers as well. This is a complex and technically challenging operation that must be done by an experienced facial plastic surgeon with specific training in septal perforation repair. Successful septal perforation repair is best accomplished by an open operation in which the septum is seen directly and the mucosal membranes above and below the perforation on both the right and left side of the septum are carefully elevated and advanced over the hole to cover it. A graft, such as Alloderm®, can be placed between the advanced membranes to support the repair and allow it to heal.
The success of a perforation repair mainly depends on a technically sound operation, protection of that repair after surgery, and good post-operative blood flow to help the repair heal. A successful outcome is not fully realized until several months after surgery when it is clear that the closure has remained intact. Factors that can cause the failure of a septal perforation repair in the post-operative period include smoking, exposure to second-hand smoke, inadequately treated diabetes, cocaine use, picking, and the use of topical nasal decongestants and topical nasal steroids.
Dr. Klausner guides her patient’s before and after surgery in order to help yield the best outcome for her patients.
How Can I Find Out More About Septum Repair?
Lee Ann M. Klausner, M.D. can recommend the optimal treatment plan for your nasal septum perforation. As a top-rated nasal surgeon, Dr. Klausner knows the ins and outs of performing this procedure with skill and care to ensure minimal complications. Schedule your visit to the Klausner Institute in Upper East Side, Manhattan, New York, NY, and see how Dr. Klausner can make a difference in your respiratory care.
Septal perforation repair FAQs
How is a perforated septum diagnosed?
It can be difficult to tell if you have a deviated septum, perforated septum, or similar issue on your own. That's why we recommend seeing an experienced specialist like Dr. Klausner as soon as you notice any of the above symptoms. Our clinic offers advanced in-office tools to diagnose your condition and create a personalized treatment plan moving forward.
Can a perforated septum heal on its own?
It depends on the size and location of the perforation, but it's very unlikely your issue will heal without surgery. An untreated perforated septum may continue to get worse over time and impact your quality of life. Patients will have continued obstruction when breathing, chronic dryness, sinus infections, and bleeding.
What is the difference between a deviated and perforated septum?
Both a deviated septum can cause symptoms, but they are treated differently. A deviated septum means the septum is crooked, while a perforation is a tear or hole in the septum wall. Both conditions can make it challenging to breathe, but it's still important to seek help from a professional in New York.
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