People who suffer from allergies tend to develop chronic enlargement of nasal tissue on the sides of the nose (called turbinates) which can block their airways. This swelling may be treated with nasal sprays or oral medications, and allergy testing is often performed as well to rule out any specific triggers.
A feeling of swelling or blockage in the nose. In addition, enlarged turbinates can lead to snoring, obstructive sleep apnea, and dry mouth (a result of having to breathe through the mouth).
If conservative therapies fail, surgical reduction of the size of the turbinates can be performed to improve nasal airflow and symptoms of allergies.
The method of treatment depends on the severity of the nasal obstruction and the underlying cause. Treatment options for enlarged turbinates include medication, injection, freezing and/or partial removal with turbinate reduction surgery (turbinoplasty).
The goal of turbinate reduction surgery is to reduce the size of the enlarged turbinate to improve breathing.
The procedure is performed as outpatient surgery with the aid of an endoscope (a thin, flexible instrument) inserted inside the nose through the nostril. A small incision is made inside the nose at the front of the turbinate, where an instrument is used to remove the excess swollen tissue. Turbinate reduction surgery is often performed in conjunction with Septoplasty surgery and often in conjunction with Rhinoplasty (nose job).