Patients commonly present with a blocked or ‘stuffy’ nose. There is a long list of differential diagnoses to consider but the symptom must be fully investigated because it may indicate the presence of a significant underlying problem.
- The nose is a conduit for airflow and a vital component in the filtration and humidification of air, in chemosensation and as part of the nasal reflex.
- There is a broad range of differential diagnoses for nasal obstruction.
- A diagnosis is usually made after taking a full patient history and conducting a physical examination.
- A stepwise approach is required for the management of nasal obstruction.
- Management starts with simple measures, progressing to increased medical management and then surgical intervention, if required.