Recovering from a turbinate reduction procedure
Following nasal turbinate reduction surgery, you can expect to make a full recovery, although you might experience discomfort, nasal stuffiness, and mild nasal drainage in the first few days following the procedure. Here's what to expect:
Recovery room and discharge from surgical center
After turbinate reduction, especially if the procedure requires general anesthesia, you will be monitored for a while, in a recovery area in the surgical center. When it's time to go home, a staff member or your doctor will go over specific instructions on how to take care of yourself until you're fully recovered. It's good for your full recovery and your peace of mind to have a copy of your instructions in writing, so don't hesitate to ask if you aren't offered written recovery instructions.
Your nose will still feel congested due to swelling for as long as a few weeks after surgery but this will subside. Additionally, some bleeding may be experienced post operatively. If the procedure was conducted under general anesthesia, sometimes nausea or vomiting after surgery are to be expected, and if you experience these, you should eat and drink clear liquids. Lingering effects of anesthesia and pain medicine could cause dizziness or drowsiness after surgery.
Medications you may receive
You might receive a prescription for pain medication for any discomfort you feel. All pain medications must be taken as your doctor instructs. There could be additional medicine prescribed, including antibiotics to help fight any post-operative infection. It is also very common for your doctor to recommend a saline spray and/or saline rinse be used to ensure your nose remains moist to assist in healing.
Special instructions and restrictions
Discomfort, tenderness and some residual stuffiness in the nasal passages is not uncommon; these should ease up according to the schedule your doctor provides. You may receive advice to not to blow your nose or to avoid vigorous exercise in the first few days after the procedure.
Complications and when to report them to the doctor
Your doctor will caution you to report such complications as persistent or new bleeding at the surgical site. High fever, dizziness, or unanticipated nasal discharge are all reasons to contact the doctor's office for advice.
Follow up examination
The doctor will instruct you on whether to make a follow up appointment. It may be that you will need to return in 10 days to 2 weeks for one last check that the procedure is complication-free and that recovery is proceeding as expected.