DEVIATED NASAL SEPTUM/RHINITIS
The nasal septum is the partition that divides one side of the nose from the other. It is rarely perfectly straight--it is slightly crooked in over 80% of people. When the septum is so crooked or deviated that it blocks the nasal passage, then a surgical operation called a submucous resection will restore clear breathing.
To the left, deviated Nasal Septum blocking left nasal passage
and to the right, illustration demonstrating
deviated nasal septum with arrow.
If your nose is congested on one side during part of the day and later congested on the other side, then it is not just the septum that is causing the nasal obstruction. In this instance, an abnormal turbinate--a structure that projects from the lateral wall of the nose into the nasal cavity--may be the cause. A procedure known as a turbinate reduction may be required to restore function and may often be combined with a submucous resection of the septum.
Rhinitis is an inflammation or thickening of the membrane and tissue lining the nose. Often this change impacts on the sinus tissue as well, Rhinosinusitis. Again allergy, environment, infection and structural problems can cause this to occur. Treatment is directed toward the inciting agent as well as the structural findings. Allergy evaluation and therapy which includes injections, oral medications and sprays are helpful. If infection is present an antibiotic is useful. However if the process does not improve over time it becomes chronic and then generally involves the sinuses as well.