DO I HAVE A FRACTURED NOSE?
If you believe you have fractured or broken your nose, don’t panic. Nasal fractures are more common than you think. Studies have shown that these fractures are the third most common with the nose itself being the most frequently broken facial bone.
Despite the frequency of nasal fractures, the fracture may be under-treated. If the injury is severe there may be long-term complications that can be extremely difficult to treat properly.
WHAT IF MY NASAL FRACTURE GOES UNTREATED?
Despite how common nasal fractures are, a lot of times they go untreated and long-term functional and cosmetic issues may result such as:
- Obstructed nasal passages
- Loss of smell and taste
- Nose bleeds
- Deviated septum
- Healing improperly
- Increase risk of breaking or fracturing the nose again
Dr. Shuaib is trained in some of the latest developments in nasal trauma, diseases, and disorders of the ear, nose, and throat. His work in the area of nasal fractures is extensive, and he has many treatments at his disposal that can be performed in the office or operating room and can help patients regain their quality of life.
WHAT SHOULD I DO IF I THINK MY NOSE IS BROKEN?
If you have recently suffered an impact to the face from an accident or from participating in sports do not delay in seeking treatment. If you’ve been struck in the nose, it’s important to see an ear, nose and throat physician to check for septal hematoma, a blood-filled cavity between the cartilage and the supporting tissue that envelops the cartilage in the nasal septum. If left untreated, these pockets of blood easily become infected.
If you are diagnosed with a septal hematoma, it must be treated promptly, otherwise, it may cause the septum of the nose to collapse.
A septal hematoma must be drained. An incision will be made, and a drain may be placed to prevent the nasal septum from collecting more blood in the cavity. Finally, nasal packing may be placed inside the area.
HOW WILL DR. SHUAIB KNOW IF I HAVE A NASAL FRACTURE AND NEED CORRECTIVE TREATMENT?
Dr. Shuaib will ask you several questions and evaluate your face and nose. You will be asked to describe how the fracture happened and how your nose looked before the injury. Dr. Shuaib will not only examine your nose, but also the surrounding areas including your eyes, jaw, and teeth, and will look for bruising, lacerations, and swelling. Sometimes an x-ray or computerized tomography (CT) scan will be recommended to evaluate the injury further. If your nose looks very different or if it’s more difficult to breathe through, that’s generally a good sign that you have a nasal fracture.
WHAT TREATMENT OPTIONS ARE AVAILABLE FOR A FRACTURED NOSE?
If Dr. Shuaib determines that your injury is beyond a more conservative treatment option, there are several ways in which Dr. Shuaib can proceed. Dr. Shuaib will choose the most minimally evasive option possible.
It’s not possible to treat all fractures using the same technique. As with other facial trauma, Dr. Shuaib will consider the specific characteristics of the fracture.
Recommended management varies widely from conservative nasal irrigations and nasal sprays to more extensive treatments involving rhinoplasty (cosmetic surgery to the nose). Nasal fracture treatment is generally divided into closed reduction (CR) and open reduction (OR) therapy. Closed reduction is a relatively straightforward procedure, with acceptable results for minimal injuries. Dr. Shuaib may be able to reset the nasal bone without the use of surgical devices.
Open reduction therapy will be used if your nose did not heal properly, or if you are suffering from a septal hematoma.
POSSIBLE ISSUES THAT COULD OCCUR
Procedural difficulties are uncommon, but as with any surgery, there is some risk involved. Problems might include:
- Negative reation to anesthesia
Talk to Dr. Shuaib before the procedure about managing factors that can increase your risk of complications, which can include:
- Drinking alcohol/span>
- Chronic disease such as diabetes or obesity
Also, you may be more susceptible to complications if you suffer from or have a family history of blood clots.
OPEN REDUCTION PROCEDURE
This procedure is performed under general anesthesia which blocks any pain during the surgery and keeps you asleep.
WHAT HAPPENS DURING AN OPEN REDUCTION PROCEDURE?
Each Open Reduction Surgery varies depending on the location and type of fracture. A breathing tube could be used to help you breathe as you sleep. Then, with an antiseptic, Dr. Shuaib will clean your skin and make an incision on the inside of the nose, the fractured nasal bones are reset in the midline. A cast or dressing will then be applied to the area as well as internal nasal splints to hold everything in the midline.
Following surgery, you will be moved to recovery where your vital signs, including your blood pressure, breathing, pulse and nerves near the broken bone are monitored.
HOW LONG DOES OPEN REDUCTION SURGERY TAKE?
An Open Reduction Surgery may require one to two hours depending on the severity of the ailment.
HOW MUCH WILL IT HURT?
General anesthesia prevents pain and discomfort during the procedure. Any additional pain after the surgery will be treated with medications prescribed by Dr. Shuaib.
If you or your family doctor believe you have suffered a nasal fracture, set up an appointment with Dr. Shuaib as soon as possible as a delay could be serious. Dr. Shuaib will be able to diagnose your fracture and prescribe the correct course of action to lead you back on a clear path to wellness.
Dr. Stefan Shuaib is expertly trained to treat complications stemming from a nasal fracture. He is one of the top nose surgeons in Texas and provides on-site diagnosis and treatment for Rio Grande Valley patients. If you suffer from a nasal fracture, it is important to schedule an appointment with Dr. Shuaib by calling (956) 362-8125.