A deviated septum refers to a twist or bend in the dividing partition between the two nasal passages. It can be a result of previous trauma although is frequently present without any history of injury. It may have been present since birth in some people.

A deviated septum can cause or contribute to:

  • nasal obstruction
  • headaches
  • nose bleeds
  • sinusitis
  • externally twisted nose

Diagnosing a deviated septum is quite straightforward, and requires a camera inspection of the nose (nasendoscopy). CT scans and other tests may be ordered for some patients.

If the symptoms are severe enough, consideration of a septoplasty or septal reconstruction operation is appropriate. This involves repositioning or repair of the deviated portions of the septum. It is typically done under a short anaesthetic and may be combined with other treatments in the nose and sinuses at the same time.