Questions & Answers
Questions & Answers about Nose Surgery (Rhinoplasty)
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Am I good candidate for rhinoplasty?
The best rhinoplasty candidates are in good health, over the age of 16, non-smokers, and are able to avoid blood thinning medications for two weeks before surgery. They are unhappy with nasal appearance and/or breathing, and have realistic expectations of the result.
How long does the surgery take?
Primary rhinoplasties are usually 1 1/2-2 hours. Revision procedures may take up to 4 hours.
How much pain will I have after surgery?
Nose surgery is not typically as painful as the patient thinks they will be. The biggest complaint is nasal obstruction the gauze placed after surgery. These are typically removed the day after surgery and the obstruction is thus removed. You will have swelling and possibly some bruising following surgery. You will be asked to used cold compresses to help with swelling for several days after surgery. Pain is usually well tolerated with medication, which Dr. Nein will prescribe.
What are the risks of this surgery?
Adverse events are rare and mild. One possible risk is bleeding. All patients have nasal drainage for a few days after surgery. Approximately 2% of patients will actually have blood slowly oozing from a nostril, and this is easily controlled at home. A severe nosebleed is extremely unlikely. Another risk is excessive scar formation. Also very rare, it is usually seen as a hard bump in the nasal bone or a softer bump on the nasal tip. For the approximately 2% of patients who experience this, the problem is easily corrected. Such scar tissue does not reflect poor surgical techniqe-some patients are just more prone to a stronger healing response.
Will I be swollen after surgery?
Swelling is impossible to avoid after rhinoplasty. Your cheeks may be swollen 1-2 weeks after surgery but this is often only noticeable to the patient. Your nasal skin, however, will be swollen longer, and this is extremely important for patients to remember. It may months for the swelling at the tip of your nose to resolve and the final result will not be seen until this resolves. This waiting period is frustrating for all patients and we will give you suggestions on how to minimize swelling, helping to resolve this as quickly as possible.
When will the results of my rhinoplasty be visible?
Your nose will be more aesthetically pleasing and natural immediately after surgery, though it will be swollen. You will see this after the splint is removed (1 week after surgery). And once all bruising is resolved, patients will only see a better nasal structure that continues to improve as healing progresses.
Will I have scars?
If your procedure is done with the “closed” technique, then all incisions are inside the nose and no scars are created in your skin. If you have the “open” techinque, then there will be a very, small unnoticeable scar in the skin between your nostrils.
When can I resume normal activities? Work?
Dr. Nein recommends at least 1 week off. The plastic splint on your nose will be removed after 7 days. You may still be bruised under your eyes, so if this will interfere with work, you may want to take 2 weeks off. You will be asked to refrain from any strenuous activities for at least 3 weeks including heavy lifting or straining as this will increase swelling. You may drive when you feel up to it and as long as you are not taking any narcotic pain medication. You may want to avoid wearing heavy glasses for several weeks.