What Is The Difference Between A Septoplasty And A Rhinoplasty?

Although these two types of surgery are both nasal surgery, there are some significant differences between septoplasty and rhinoplasty. If your surgeon recommends septoplasty, either on its own procedure or with rhinoplasty, there are a few things you should know about it.

Different goals

While there are many similarities between septoplasty and rhinoplasty, they still serve two very different purposes.

– Rhinoplasty is a common facial cosmetic procedure that many patients choose to enhance the shape of their nose, to enhance facial harmony. This type of procedure can also be used to fix breathing difficulties which are caused by structural defects in the nose. The procedure can also be used to restore a nose that has been injured or damaged due to an accident or an illness.

These are the main reasons people choose rhinoplasty surgery:

  • Reduce the size of the nose to match better with the face size.
  • Reduce large nostrils.
  • Straighten any bumps on the nose.
  • Make the nose appear more narrow or higher or more refined.

– Septoplasty is a special surgical procedure that is used to correct a deviated nasal septum, which is the partition between the two nasal cavities. Septoplasty is commonly used to improve breathing through the nose by fixing the interior of the nose for purely functional purposes.

These are the main reasons people choose septoplasty surgery:

  • Trouble breathing through the nose.
  • Having blocked nasal airways or rhinitis.
  • Frequent headaches or migraine due to sinus issues.

Septoplasty will not change the appearance of your nose in the manner that rhinoplasty can. However, it can help improve your nasal function including breathing as well as drainage.

Different insurance coverage

Another major difference between septoplasty and rhinoplasty is whether or not an insurance policy will cover it.

Rhinoplasty is usually not covered by insurance, especially if it is performed for only cosmetic purposes. But there still are exceptions. For example, if the rhinoplasty is performed to correct an injury that has caused the airway to collapse or be blocked, a specific insurance plan may cover the procedure.

Septoplasty, on the other hand, will be covered by many insurance plans if the surgery is deemed to be medically necessary.

Different procedure

The only change that septoplasty makes to the nose is correcting the septum. The shape and size of the nose will remain the same. To fix the deviated septum, the surgeon usually removes cartilage and, on rare occassions, may take cartilage from another part of the body such as the ears or ribs to support the reshaped septum, but the basic structure of the nose remains intact and unchanged.

A septoplasty is typically performed completely inside the nose. Any incisions or cuts made will be concealed inside the nose. Depending on how severe the deviation is, the surgeon may remove some of the septum, replace it entirely with a splint or reposition it.

The procedure usually takes about 1-2 hours to finish.

Septorhinoplasty – a combination of septoplasy and rhinoplasty

If you have troubles breathing out of your nose and also want to reshape it, getting a septoplasty and rhinoplasty together might be the ideal solution. This combination of surgeries is technically called a septorhinoplasty.

In a septorhinoplasty surgery, the surgeon will make functional and cosmetic improvements to the nose at the same time. After the septum is corrected and straightened, the surgeon will carefully close the incisions with stitches and may pack the nose to help the healing process.

This procedure will change the external shape of the nose and straighten the cartilage on the inside of the nose. A septoplasty and rhinoplasty performed at once can take anywhere from two to three hours, depending on the complexity of the procedure.

The cost for the rhinoplasty and septoplasty

The cost can vary tremendously depending on many factors such as the surgeon’s reputation, the geographic location, the complexity of the surgery and the number of times that nasal surgery has been performed in the past.  A septoplasty may be covered by an insurance policy and will usually cost less than a rhinoplasty.

A septoplasty can cost from US$800-1000 (without insurance) in a country like Thailand or up to US$2000-2500 in South Korea or close to US$5,000 in Singapore. A rhinoplasty can cost from US$1500$-3000 in Thailand, US$3000-5000 in South Korea and can cost as much as US$7,000 in Singapore. The cost of a septorhinoplasty will usually be similar to that of a rhinoplasty.