OBJECTIVE: The study goal was to validate a disease-specific health status instrument for use in patients with nasal obstruction. DESIGN, SETTINGS, AND PATIENTS: The study consisted of a prospective instrument validation conducted at 4 academic medical centers with 32 adults with nasal septal deformity. METHODS: Prospective instrument validation occurred in 2 stages. Stage 1 was the development of a preliminary (alpha-version) instrument of potential items. Stage 2 was a test of the alpha-version for item performance, internal consistency, and test-retest reliability; construct, discriminant, criterion validity, and responsiveness; and creation of the final instrument. RESULTS: Items with poor performance were eliminated from the alpha-version instrument. In testing the final instrument, test-retest reliability was adequate at 0.702; internal consistency reliability was also adequate at 0.785. Validity was confirmed using correlation and comparison analysis, and response sensitivity was excellent. CONCLUSIONS: The Nasal Obstruction Symptom Evaluation Scale is a valid, reliable, and responsive instrument that is brief and easy to complete and has potential use for outcomes studies in adults with nasal obstruction.