Kurtis Waters, M.D.

Phone: (218) 454-8888, Fax: (888) 835-7231
13359 Isle Drive, Suite 1, Baxter, MN 56425

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Nasal Obstruction

What is Nasal Airway Obstruction?


Nasal breathing delivers approximately 70% of airflow to the lungs.1 More than 20 million Americans2 are estimated to suffer from nasal airway obstruction (NAO), which limits airflow through the nose with significant quality of life consequences.3

Symptoms may include:

  • Nasal congestion or stuffiness

  • Nasal blockage or obstruction

  • Trouble breathing through your nose

  • Trouble sleeping

  • Unable to get enough air through your nose during exercise or exertion


Patient Testimonial




What Causes Nasal Airway Obstruction?


Even slight narrowing of the nasal valve can lead to significant reduction in airflow.4,5,6 Structural blockages in three areas are common:

  • Septum: The cartilage wall between the nostrils can bend and block the nasal passage.

  • Turbinates: Ridges of bone and tissue inside the nose can limit airflow when enlarged.

  • Lateral (side) wall: Weak or excessively flexible upper/lower cartilage in the outer nasal wall may cause it to collapse inward when a person inhales.


The most common conditions to impact patients are septal deviation, turbinate hypertrophy, and nasal valve collapse. Lateral wall collapse may equal or even exceed septal deviation as the prime cause of nasal airway obstruction.