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Nasal Blockage

Q: For as long as I can remember, I've had trouble breathing through my nose. It feels blocked, but when I blow it no mucus comes out. My doctor ruled out allergies. Any idea what this could be and what can I do about it?

Dr. Donnica:
Allergies are only one of many possible causes for nasal blockages. Since allergies have been ruled out and since this is clearly a chronic condition, you need to have a thorough examination by an ear, nose and throat specialist (otolaryngologist or "ENT"). Possible causes include nasal polyps (benign growths); enlarged nasal turbinates; a deviated septum or another deformity from an old injury that you may have forgotten or never noticed in the first place; scarring from previous nasal surgery or trauma; or even a foreign object that may have gotten lodged in the nasal passage.

Your treatment options will depend upon the precise diagnosis. If surgery is recommended, don't panic! New laser techniques are available which make previously involved nasal surgeries not only more likely to be successful, but to have a shorter, and less disfiguring, recovery.

Created: 9/14/2004  -  Donnica Moore, M.D.

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