What is functional rhinoplasty?

Functional rhinoplasty corrects abnormalities that obstruct nasal breathing. By correcting these problems, functional rhinoplasty helps patients breathe much more easily, thereby enhancing quality of life. These issues can be due to a birth defect, a deformity that has developed, an injury that has occurred, or trauma to the nose. Symptoms may include:

  • Impaired breathing
  • Nasal congestion
  • Reduced sense of smell
  • Dry mouth
  • Nasal drip
  • Chronic sinus infections
  • Sinus pressure headaches 
  • Severe nosebleeds

Commonly addressed conditions with functional rhinoplasty

Deviated septum

A septoplasty is typically used to correct a deviated septum. This procedure aligns the septum by re-positioning or trimming it, or by replacing the bone and cartilage. A deviated septum can be an incredibly frustrating condition, and may cause migraines, noisy breathing/snoring, dripping nose, sinus infections, facial pain, and congestion. 

Nasal polyps

Although nasal polyps are benign, they’re still polyps — which means that they are growths. This means they can impact breathing or create sinus infections. Functional rhinoplasty can be done to remove these polyps from the lining of the nasal passages or sinuses, making it much easier to breathe.

Collapse of the nasal valve

Collapse of the nasal valve can result in loud snoring, congestion, bleeding, crusty nostrils, and trouble breathing. Functional rhinoplasty for this issue often involves utilizing spreader grafts to achieve the support needed for these valves to stay open and allow for proper breathing.

Enlarged turbinates

The part of our nose that purifies the air before it goes into our body are turbinates. Sometimes they become enlarged, which makes it difficult to breathe. This is when a turbinectomy is usually performed to remove part of the turbinates. A turbinoplasty is another option. In this procedure, the turbinates aren’t removed; rather, they are just altered. 

Recovery

The majority of functional rhinoplasty patients require about 1 to 2 weeks for recovery. Depending on your specific surgery, a splint may be positioned over the nose to help with healing. If you receive a splint, it is typically removed one week following surgery. 

Most patients experience bruising, swelling, and mild soreness during recovery. To help manage pain, Dr. Mentz may prescribe prescription medication. This can be discussed during your consultation, along with any other questions or concerns you may have.  

I had a deviated septum and an ugly nose. After doing my research on doctors in the Houston area, I chose Dr. Mentz. I'm happy to say that he fixed my nose and it's not ugly anymore. I have much more confidence in myself now. He changed my life for the better!

Henry A. Mentz

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