The decision to have the plastic surgery is a very personal one. You will have to decide if benefits will achieve your goals and if the potential risks and complications of rhinoplasty are acceptable.
Your plastic surgeon and/or staff will explain in detail the risks associated with the surgery. You will be asked to sign consent forms to ensure that you fully understand the procedure and any potential risks or complications.
Rhinoplasty risks include:
- Anesthesia risks
- Change in skin sensation (numbness or pain)
- breathing difficulties
Perforation of the nasal septum (perforation in the nasal septum) is rare. Additional surgical treatment may be necessary to repair the septum but it may be impossible to correct these complications
- Poor wound healing or scarring
- The possibility of revision surgery
- Skin discoloration and swelling
- Unsatisfactory nose appearance
How should I prepare for rhinoplasty?
When preparing for rhinoplasty surgery, you may be asked to:
- Get a lab test
- Take the medications or adjust your current medications
- stop smoking
- Avoid taking the aspirin, anti-inflammatory drugs and herbal supplements as they can increase bleeding
- Your plastic surgeon will also discuss that where your procedure will be performed.
Rhinoplasty can be performed in an approved clinic surgical facility, licensed mobile surgical center, or hospital. Be sure to arrange for someone to drive you to and from the surgery and to stay with you for at least the first night after surgery.
What are the steps of rhinoplasty?
Step 1 – Anesthesia
Medications are given for your comfort during the surgery. Options include intravenous sedation or general anesthesia.
Step 2 – Incision
Rhinoplasty is performed either with a closed procedure, in which the incisions are hidden inside the nose, or an open procedure, in which an incision is made through the spine, the narrow strip of tissue that separates the two nostrils.
Through these incisions, the skin covering the nasal bones and cartilage is gently lifted, allowing access to reshape the nasal structure.
Step 3 – Reshape the structure of the nose
A large nose can be reduced by removing the bone or cartilage. Nose surgery may sometimes require the addition of cartilage grafts.
Mostly, cartilage from the septum, which is the septum located in the middle of the nose, is used for this. Sometimes cartilage from the ear or, rarely, part of the rib cartilage can be used.
Step 4 – Correcting a deviated nasal septum
If the septum is deviated, it can be straightened and the bumps inside the nose reduced to improve breathing.
Step 5 – Close the incision
Once the basic structure of the nose is sculpted into the desired shape, the skin and nasal tissues are re-lined and the incisions closed.
Additional incisions can be made in the natural creases of the nostrils to change their size.
Step 6 – See results
For a few days, splints and gauze may support the nose as it begins to heal. Get more information about rhinoplasty results.
What should I expect during the recovery period from rhinoplasty?
During the rhinoplasty recovery period, a splint and/or filling may be placed inside your nose with a splint or dressings placed on the outside to support and protect the new structures during initial healing.
While the initial swelling subsides within a few weeks, it can take up to a year for the new contour of the nose to improve completely. During this time, you may notice gradual changes in the appearance of your nose as it improves to a permanent result.
The swelling may come and go and get worse in the morning during the first year after rhinoplasty surgery.
You will be given specific instructions that may include:
- How to care for the surgical site
- Medicines to be applied or taken orally to aid healing and reduce the possibility of infection
- Specific concerns to look out for at the site of surgery or in your general health
- When should you follow up with a plastic surgeon?