Nasal Valve Collapse
What Is Nasal Valve Collapse?
Nasal valve collapse, also known as nasal valve stenosis, is one of the most common causes of nasal obstruction. When the nasal valve, the narrow part of the airway, weakens it can collapse inward. This affects one or both sides of the nose and causes difficulty breathing. Typically, patients experience nasal valve collapse, NVC, as a result of a rhinoplasty or a deviated septum.
Signs of Nasal Valve Stenosis
Typical signs of nasal valve stenosis include nasal congestion and pronounced difficulty in breathing inward from the nose. Patients with nasal valve collapse may have a difficult time breathing during physical activities, as though they have a clothespin on their nostrils. Keep in mind, some NVC is expected during strenuous activities, but significant obstruction shouldn’t occur. These symptoms can make physical activities more difficult while for others, it may prevent them from participating altogether.
Additionally, patients may also find it especially hard to breathe while lying down, which creates a tendency to breathe through their mouth. This could result in snoring and poor sleep quality, which has further implications. Often these patients seek out remedies such as BREATHE RIGHT® nasal strips for relief, but the source of the problem remains.
How to Diagnose Nasal Valve Collapse
An accurate diagnosis is the key to providing an effective treatment plan for NVC. At St. Louis Sinus Center, Dr. Gould and staff take these steps to diagnose nasal valve collapse:
- Carefully review the patient’s medical history and symptoms
- Perform a nasal endoscopy which will rule out other conditions that have the same symptoms
- Conduct a Cottle Maneuver test in where the cheek is gently pulled laterally with one or two fingers to open the valve. This test determines if the most significant site of nasal obstruction is the valve or farther inside the nasal cavity
Nasal Valve Stenosis Treatment Options
For patients with nasal valve stenosis, there are few conservative treatment options. However, there are several surgical techniques our staff can use to treat NVC. The course of treatment will vary by patient and can be one of the following:
- Cartilage graft
- Nasal ridge broadening
- Permanent Sutures
“Dr. Gould and his staff were wonderful. They all took the time to answer any and all questions and made sure I was satisfied with the answers. The office is stunning! I strongly recommend St. Louis Sinus Center.” – Leslie G.
What is LATERA?
LATERA® is an FDA approved nasal implant that provides support to the collapsing lateral nasal cartilage. LATERA can help patients breathe better by reducing nasal obstructive symptoms.
How Does LATERA Work?
LATERA is a simple procedure that Dr. Gould performs at the St. Louis Sinus Center. First, he applies topical anesthesia to ensure patient comfort. Then, Dr. Gould inserts the implant through a small, inter-nasal incision. After insertion, the implant isn’t visible and doesn’t affect the external structure of the nose. The entire procedure takes only 5 minutes.
Over the next 18 months, your body will absorb the LATERA implant. Post-implantation, a fibrous capsule begins to form and helps to maintain the integrity of the implant through 12 months. Tissue encapsulation promotes acute implant stability and enables localized tissue response during the absorption process. Once the fibrous collagen has replaced the implant remodeling is complete and the fibrous collagen will be in place to provide ongoing support.