The turbinates are 3 paired sets of structures that line the inside wall of the nose. They filter, moisten, and heat air as it enters the nose. Turbinates are made of small bones that are surrounded by soft tissue.
Outfracture is a procedure to break and shift these bones.
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Turbinates can become enlarged. This can make it difficult to breathe through your nose. This surgery shifts the turbinates to open the airway. This may help to:
Problems from the procedure are rare, but all procedures have some risk. Your doctor will review potential problems, like:
Your doctor will use results from previous tests. You may be asked to have a physical exam.
Before your procedure:
Smoking can increase the risk of complications. It can increase scarring and slow healing. Your doctor may ask you stop smoking up to a month.
Depending on the extent of the surgery, you may have:
A thin tube with a camera will be passed into your nose. It will allow the doctor to see inside the nose. Small tools will break the small bones. They will be pushed up to the side wall, away from the passageway.
Soft tissue may also be thinned-out around the area. Bleeding can be stopped using special tools, stitches, or packing.
Anesthesia will block pain during the procedure. You will have pain after the procedure for the first few days. Medicine will help to manage pain.
At the Care Center
The care team will watch for complications while you wake. Recovery may also include:
You will need to take steps to avoid increasing pressure in your head. You may need to avoid heavy lifting or straining for a few days. Home care will also help the area heal. This may include nasal spray.
It is important to monitor your recovery. Alert your doctor to any problems. If any of the following occur, call your doctor:
If you think you have an emergency, call for emergency medical services right away.
American Academy of Otolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery
Family Doctor—American Academy of Family Physicians
Canadian Society of Otolaryngology
The College of Family Physicians of Canada
Brunworth J, Holmes J, Sindwani R. Inferior turbinate hypertrophy: Review and graduated approach to surgical management. Am J Rhinol Allergy. 2013;27(5):411-415.
Reduction of turbinates. ENT Consent Patient Resource website. Available at: http://www.entconsent.co.uk/ENTcons/reduce%20turbs.html. Accessed January 11, 2019.
Septoplasty & turbinate surgery. American Rhinologic Society website. Available at: http://care.american-rhinologic.org/septoplasty_turbinates. Accessed January 11, 2019.
Turbinate reduction. Johns Hopkins Sinus Center website. Available at: http://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/sinus/surgical_procedures/turbinate_reduction.html. Accessed January 11, 2019.
Last reviewed November 2018 by EBSCO Medical Review Board James Cornell, MD Last Updated: 1/8/2019