Endoscopic inferior turbinate reduction: an outcomes analysis

Laryngoscope. 2001 Nov;111(11 Pt 1):1957-9. doi: 10.1097/00005537-200111000-00016.


Objectives/hypothesis: In a previous publication, we introduced an endoscopic technique for the treatment of nasal obstruction caused by inferior turbinate hypertrophy. The technique, a modification of the procedure popularized by Mabry, involves resecting the inferior and lateral aspects of the inferior turbinate with a microdebrider under endoscopic guidance. Our preliminary postoperative results were favorable. All 20 patients experienced improvement by postoperative day 5 and the incidence of complications over the first 6 months after surgery was low. The objective of this study is to perform a long-term outcomes analysis of patients undergoing the procedure.

Study design: Follow-up survey questionnaire and analysis.

Methods: We sent questionnaires to 60 patients, ranging from 6 to 40 months after surgery, inquiring about continued use of nasal medications, need for further surgery, presence of adverse effects, and improvement in symptoms. Nasal airway obstruction was assessed on a subjective scoring scale from 1 (no obstruction) to 6 (complete obstruction).

Results: Of the 28 (47%) patients who returned questionnaires, the severity of daytime nasal obstruction was rated as 2.3 and nighttime nasal obstruction as 2.7. The use of nasal steroids and oral decongestants was 25% and 21%, respectively. Adverse effects were minimal and all but one patient (96%) experienced improvement in their nasal airway.

Conclusion: These results confirm the long-term effectiveness of this procedure for the relief of nasal obstruction.

MeSH terms

  • Endoscopy
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Hypertrophy
  • Male
  • Nasal Decongestants / therapeutic use
  • Nasal Obstruction / etiology
  • Nasal Obstruction / surgery*
  • Nasal Septum / surgery
  • Outcome Assessment, Health Care
  • Patient Satisfaction
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Time Factors
  • Turbinates / pathology
  • Turbinates / surgery*


  • Nasal Decongestants