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Nasal septal deviation with obstructive symptoms: Association found with asthma but not with other general health problems


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Nasal septal deviation (NSD) is a very common deformity. Because it may induce chronic upper airway obstruction in the nose, clinicians encounter some patients who have concerns about whether this can be a risk factor for general health. However, the influence of NSD on general health has rarely been studied.


To determine associations between NSD, especially NSD with nasal obstructive symptom, and general health problems in an adult Korean population.


This nationwide study analyzed data from the Korea National Health and Nutritional Examination Survey, 2008‐2009. NSD was evaluated by using a nasal endoscope, and a nasal obstructive symptom was assessed via individual interviews. The survey also investigated general health problems, such as medical comorbidity, mental health status, and quality of life. Medical conditions included neurocardiovascular, respiratory, metabolic, musculoskeletal, gastrointestinal, and malignant diseases. To eliminate the effect of combined nasal problems in otorhinolaryngology, subjects with rhinosinusitis and allergic rhinitis were excluded. This study focused on obstructive NSD, which is defined as an anatomic NSD with a chronic nasal obstructive symptom.


We enrolled 8865 participants, and the prevalence of NSD was 44.8%. No general health problems showed a significant association with NSD. However, the prevalence of NSD with an obstructive symptom was 2.1%. Obstructive NSD had no association with all the general health problems, except asthma. A significant association was found between obstructive NSD and asthma (odds ratio 2.648 [95% confidence interval, 1.211‐5.791]).


Among various general health problems, our study found that NSD was associated with asthma only when NSD was accompanied by a chronic nasal obstructive symptom.
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Keywords: Comorbidity; asthma; general health; health; nasal septal deviation; nationwide study; obstructive symptom; otorhinolaryngology

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Otorhinolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery, CHA Bundang Medical Center, CHA University, Gyeonggi-do, South Korea

Publication date: March 1, 2016

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