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What Is External Nasal Valve Surgery?

External valve surgery involves strengthening the cartilage and fleshy sides of the nostril with cartilage. This cartilage can be from your own septum, from your own rib, ears, or harvested from an organ donor. Using an open or closed nasal surgery, the cartilage is reshaped and reinforced to hold the external valves from collapsing.

What Is Internal Nasal Valve Surgery?

Cartilage can be placed either through an open or closed nasal surgery into the areas between the midline septum and upper lateral cartilages to hold the upper lateral cartilages away from the septum. This increases the area of the internal valves and as we discussed above, even one millimeter of improvement in the valve area can improve your breathing.

Preparation For A Nasal Valve Procedure

You will meet with Dr. Mourad where he usually spends an hour going over everything related to your surgery. He will evaluate and make sure that he can specifically tailor a custom care plan to your exact needs. During the consultation, Dr. Mourad will determine the exact nature of your complaints and the exact causes. He may prescribe medications that will assist in your complaints. Once a tailored plan is made, Dr. Mourad and his staff will take you through all the necessary information needed to make sure that your surgery happens without issue. We take care of the details so that you can have the most enjoyable experience.
Dr. Mourad views treating his patients to be nothing short of a privilege and an honor and enjoys taking the time to get to know his patients and fully understand their issues. Dr. Mourad’s office provides a boutique experience that takes you out of the mindset of being at the doctor’s office. It is a warm, comfortable environment, providing a bespoke experience.

Are There Additional Ways To Fix The Valves?

If your tip is dropping then surgery to lift the tip can open both the internal and external valves. Straightening the septum or narrowing the skin and cartilage between the nose can increase the area of airflow and improve nasal valve function as well. Dr. Mourad has successfully used a technique that removes the lower edge of the upper lateral cartilage with an increase in the angle of the internal valve that he has found very effective.

What If Both Of My External And Internal Valves Are Collapsed?

You can repair the external and the internal valves on one or both sides at the same time. In fact, you can also have septoplasty, sinus surgery, and rhinoplasty during the same surgery. Dr. Mourad is an expert surgeon at all of the above procedures and will work with you to plan the right procedure to get you breathing better.

After Surgery and Recovery

  • Anesthesia: Depending on the type of anesthesia administered, patients may have a reaction. This is exceedingly rare, and it is important to discuss your personal risk with your anesthesiologist.
  • Infection: In rare circumstances patients may develop an infection following nasal valve procedures. These are usually managed with intraoperative and postoperative antibiotics.
  • Bleeding: Although rare, patients may have bleeding episodes following nasal surgery. Your surgeon will likely order blood work to make sure you are healthy enough to undergo the procedure. Your surgeon should also go over all medications and supplements that you take to minimizing bleeding risk.
  • Need for secondary and revision surgeries: Depending on the complexity of the surgery, sometimes multiple surgeries are required to ensure the best aesthetic and functional outcomes.
  • Scarring and Poor wound healing: Some patients with underlying medical conditions or more prone to poor wound healing and scarring. It is important to understand these risks prior to embarking on a treatment strategy.
  • Local Reactions: Sometimes you may experience local reactions to the ointments, sutures, taping material, and nasal packing used during surgery and postoperatively. This is rarely seen, but may occur. If you have any allergies to certain materials or adhesives you should discuss with your surgeon.
  • Changes in nasal sensation: Patients may experience altered sensations in their nose (pain or numbness). This is exceedingly rare, and if it occurs it is most often temporary.
  • Persistent or Recurrent Nasal Airway Obstruction: Although the goal of surgery is to enhance breathing, sometimes patients may develop persistent or recurrent airway problems. This is rare, but oftentimes is due to poor wound healing or scarring (see above). This may require secondary surgeries to optimize outcomes.

Does Insurance Pay For Nasal Valve Surgery?

Yes! Because it is considered a “functional surgery” that will improve your quality of life, most insurances will pay for some or all of the costs for surgery, anesthesia and the facility fees. Our office will check your insurance benefits and let you know what they are before your office visit so there are no surprises. We will take care of the paperwork and dealing with your insurance company and will let you know what’s going on. Of course, cosmetic surgery is rarely if ever paid by insurance. Dr. Mourad is board certified in facial plastic surgery and otolaryngology and an expert nasal surgeon. If you think you have nasal valve collapse, please feel free to call our office.

Meet Moustafa Mourad, MD, FACS

Moustafa Mourad, MD, FACS is board-certified in head and neck surgery and highly-trained in cosmetic plastic surgery and facial reconstruction. Dr. Mourad is also a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons. He treats many conditions, both cosmetic and complex, that affect the head, neck... Learn More »

The Results