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Septoplasty and Turbinate Reduction

I've had chronic daily migraine for 44 years. I recently had a septoplasty (against the advice of 4 neurologists); even the ent said it wouldn't help the migraines, but I'd breathe easier.
My triggers have always been hormonal as well as weather related (I had a total hysterectomy solely because I thought it would help my headaches; it didn't). The turbinates in the nose swell in response to hormones and barometric pressure. I've been carrying nose drops in my purse since I was a kid, and every time I lie down my nose gets stuffy. Sure enough, it turns out my septum was so deviated to the right that it actually touched the opposite side of my right nostril, visibly pulling my left nostril towards the right, making it look narrower.
As it happens, the septoplasty is the only thing I've ever done over the course of 44 years which has had a significant positive impact on my migraines. I still get them, but they are not as severe. Over the last 5 weeks I've only been down for the count for 4 days, and it has rained a lot more than 4 days in that time. That is an incredible improvement!
This may not be the answer for every migraineur who also has a deviated septum, but it's definitely worth a try. It's an easy surgery, and even if it just helps you breathe easier, it's worth a try. I had doctors from one of the most prestigious headache clinics in the country advise me strongly against the septoplasty, saying that it couldn't help the headaches in any way. They were wrong. It's one more thing to look into.

  1. Hi Jules2dl,

    Thank you for sharing your success story with us! I'm so happy to hear you've seen a reduction in your migraine frequency - it's always good to hear positive news!

    Migraine is a neurological genetic disease and reducing our triggers plays a vital role in the management of it. Septoplasty and septum surgery aren't recommended solely for migraine but having these procedures may reduce these triggers therefore reducing our migraine frequency.

    I'm glad it's working for you! Keep us posted on how you're feeling.


    1. I have had this same surgery and it has helped with the pain I used to get between the eyes. My septum was very deviated, I had a bone spur, tons of inflammation, and chronic sinusitis, so they had to go into my sinuses too. Definitely not an easy surgery! It's been 4 months and I'm still recovering.
      Although I still have migraines, this has helped a little bit. I wouldn't recommend just anyone to go and get their sinuses/septum rearranged though.

      1. There is a Dr Kevin Smith in Houston who is an ENT and plastic surgeon who thinks deviated septum with bone spurs are the root of many headaches. A friend of ours had the surgery after being chronic and hasn't had one migraine since. I have an appt. in a couple of weeks. I'm interested if others have pursued this. I've been told by my ENT in Austin that I have a deviated septum and I've had sinus issues in the past. Don't want unnecessary surgery though!

        1. Unfortunately, my success after my septoplasty and turbinate reduction was extremely short-lived. Over the summer I continued to have daily migraines which got worse with every weather change.
          The most disappointing thing to me was that the surgery didn't help the problem with my nose stuffing up at night.
          I definitely feel that the surgery was for nought.

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