A lateral rhinotomy is used to look within the nose. It is typically used to identify and remove tumors within the sinus cavity. Lateral rhinotomy surgery is designed to give healthcare providers a better look inside the nose to surgically remove tumors or other masses within the nasal cavity. During the surgery, the majority of the nasal cavity is exposed. The anterior skull
Lateral rhinotomy surgery is designed to give healthcare providers a better look inside the nose to surgically remove tumors or other masses within the nasal cavity. During the surgery, the majority of the nasal cavity is exposed. The anterior skull base, which is the wall at the top of the sinuses, can also be partially exposed during lateral rhinotomy.
This article discusses the surgical process, potential risks, and what to expect when undergoing this surgery.
Lateral rhinotomy is a type of surgical procedure that helps healthcare professionals get a deeper, more effective exposure to many areas of the sinus cavity. It is performed by making an incision in one side of the outer nose and pulling the skin off the nose.
Areas that can be closely examined during the procedure include:
While a lateral rhinotomy is typically done using one type of incision, there are a few different variations that can be used. These include:
Typically, lateral rhinotomy surgeries can be conducted on anyone of any age. The surgery itself is not extremely complicated and does not pose risk in relation to a person’s age. That said, there are some complications that can occur following the surgery.
As is the case with any surgery, some potential risks can occur following a lateral rhinotomy. These risks include:
The main purpose of a lateral rhinotomy is access to remove tumors of the sinuses and anterior skull base.
For example, if a person is experiencing difficulties breathing through their nose, they may have a tumor within their nasal cavity that is blocking the airway. The lateral rhinotomy surgery can help gain access to the tumor to remove it properly.
More specifically, symptoms that may prompt a healthcare provider to suspect a tumor and use lateral rhinotomy surgery to remove it include:
Conditions that are typically diagnosed or treated using the procedure include:
If you are having any severe pain in the sinuses that doesn’t go away, excessive bleeding from the nose, or any other excruciating symptoms in your face or nasal area, you should call 911 immediately, even if you have already booked your surgery.
While it’s unlikely you will have to do much to prepare for the procedure, there are some things that you can do that can make the process easier.
For example, you may be prescribed antibiotics to take for up to a week prior to surgery so that the risk of developing an infection after surgery is reduced.
In some cases, especially if cancer is suspected, you will have to see other medical specialists before your surgery to help lower the risk of any complications involving breathing or your ability to smell.
All surgeries come with possible side effects. Those associated with nasal cavity surgery include:
Your healthcare provider or surgeon will take the following measures to make sure the procedure goes as smoothly as possible:
You’ll want to make sure that you’re dressed comfortably and have someone that can drive you home once you are out of surgery.
Recovery from lateral rhinotomy involves healing and monitoring. The incision will heal in its own time, because the rate of wound healing highly depends on how quickly a person's body heals itself.
Depending on the cause and whether or not any mass has been removed, recovery will differ for each person who has undergone lateral rhinotomy surgery.
Long-term care involves monitoring yourself for any symptoms that may recur. Although it doesn’t happen in all cases, some conditions that require the use of lateral rhinotomy can recur.
In the event that your symptoms do return, and a new mass forms within your nasal cavity, you may have to undergo the procedure again or speak to your healthcare provider about other options.
Follow-ups with your healthcare provider will be important. They are done at two weeks, one month, two months, six months, and one year following surgery.
Lateral rhinotomy surgery is a procedure that uses an incision to cut the skin on the side of the nose so it can open fully. It is performed to gain surgical access to the inside of the nasal cavity for masses or other nasal issues. The surgery is warranted when someone experiences symptoms associated with various conditions that cause masses to form in the sinuses.
The surgery itself is done under general anesthesia and recovery time will vary on a case-by-case basis. If you have the surgery, you will likely have to monitor yourself for any changes, symptoms, or complications. You will also have to attend follow-up appointments with your healthcare provider regularly throughout the first year post-operation.
Surgery can be a frightening experience, especially when that surgery takes place on your face. While getting a lateral rhinotomy is fear-inducing, not getting it could be much worse, because you don’t want to leave the possibility of something like cancer left untreated. Talk to your healthcare provider about the advantages of having a lateral rhinotomy for prolonged or concerning symptoms.
Age is not typically a factor when it comes to determining whether a person can have a lateral rhinotomy or not. In some cases, children are more likely to have the procedure because it can be more difficult to see within their nasal cavities for masses.
All surgeries come with side effects. While they may be uncomfortable, they are often unavoidable. You can discuss possible side effects and the best coping methods with them with your healthcare provider.