Nasal obstruction is not only uncomfortable, but may cause problems with eating, sleeping, and speech and can predispose children to recurrent ear and sinus infections. In a baby, nasal obstruction is considered an urgent problem and may result in failure to thrive. Our service works closely with colleagues in pediatric radiology and allergy to establish a diagnosis and develop an appropriate nose surgery or medical treatment plan.
A common cause of nasal obstruction is enlargement of the adenoids, which are at the back of the nose above the soft palate. Enlargement occurs in response to the frequent nasal infections children get in their early years. When enlargement of the adenoids causes significant symptoms, the adenoids can be removed using a new technique that reduces operative time and blood loss. Deviation of the septum, the partition between the two sides of the nose, and nasal deformity may develop from developmental and traumatic causes. The septum can become twisted, causing internal obstruction and external misshaping of the nose. These deformities, which are more common in older children and adolescents, can be reconstructed through nose surgery with minimally invasive techniques that restore proper function and normal appearance.