Dr. Jason Litner, MD FRCSC (photo)

I have trouble breathing through my nose but my doctor says my nose looks normal. What should I do?

I have trouble breathing through my nose but my doctor says my nose looks normal. What should I do?

Posted by Dr. Litner and Dr. Solieman on February 23rd, 2008

Nasal obstruction is a complicated issue that is all too often ignored or attributed to “allergies,” “sinuses,” or to a “deviated septum.” Here at Profiles we often have patients who present to us who have been previously evaluated by other physicians who were unable to determine the cause of nasal obstruction.

We always begin by explaining that it is important to understand that nasal obstruction is a subjective sensation and that it occasionally does not correlate with anatomic problems. In other words, some people can have a slightly deviated septum and complain profusely of their difficulty breathing, while other people are completely obstructed on one side of the nose without ever even realizing they have a problem. So if you have trouble breathing through your nose, it is important to let us do a thorough evaluation.

It is true that oftentimes nasal obstruction is due to:

1. A Deviated Septum- where the midline cartilage and/or bone that separates the two sides of your nose is crooked

2. Nasal Allergies- whether seasonal or year-round.

3. “Sinus Problems”- This diagnosis is unfortunately all too commonly applied to patients without proper evaluation.

Nasal obstruction is a complex problem and there are numerous possible explanations with even more possible solutions. We recognize how nagging this problem can be and we understand how complex the solution is. The important thing for you is to find the doctor who will take the time to find out what your source of obstruction is and more importantly knows how to correct this problem.

For further info we recommend you go to our Modern Rhinoplasty online book and read further on Functional Rhinoplasty.

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