Rhinoplasty is an effective way for many of our patients to harmonize facial features and to make the nose look more proportional to the rest of the face. It can create a real difference while still offering plausible changes in your look and your self-confidence.
There is some discomfort that you can expect from rhinoplasty, as with any surgical procedure. Before you have your procedure done, it is good to know what a nose job recovery involves, ensuring that you know all the right steps to smooth, significant recovery and optimal healing. You will be given some specific directions for your nose job recovery when you meet with your surgeon for a consultation.
A mild to moderate amount of discomfort associated with the surgery will be present. With oral medications, this should be easily controlled. For pain control, Tylenol with codeine is always sufficient. After surgery, the discomfort and pain should start to decrease within 72 hours. After this period, a significant rise in pain should prompt you to call the clinic.
After surgery, bruising and swelling are not unusual. On the second day following surgery, these symptoms often worsen and then improve steadily after that; this is normal. The amount of bruising that happens varies considerably from one individual to another. Most swelling occurs around the eyes, but the cheek area may be tracked down and discolored by some bruising. If only the septum and nasal tip are operated on, it is generally expected that only slight, if any, bruising will occur.
After any nasal operation, some bloody nasal discharge is expected. Following your surgery, a small mustache type gauze dressing will be placed beneath your nose. This absorbent dressing often needs to be altered 10-20 times during the first 24-48 hours.
A light tape and plastic nasal dressing are often placed on the outside of the nose after the operation, and plastic splints are placed on the inside of the nose. The external dressing may be omitted if only septoplasty and nasal tip surgery are performed. After surgery, both the internal and external nasal dressings are removed within 5-7 days.
The most annoying issue that you will face after surgery is nasal stuffiness. The first week after surgery, it is most distressful and improves significantly once the internal nasal splints are removed. It may be expected that any residual stuffiness will gradually improve over several weeks after that.
After surgery, excess mucus is often present in the throat. It is because of the splints that stimulate the nose to produce more mucus than is temporarily typical. Mucus production will be resolved in 5 to 7 days after the surgery, once the splints are removed.
Numbness is expected in the tip of the nose, upper front teeth, or roof of the mouth following surgery because nasal surgery usually causes some of the nerves in the area to be temporarily disrupted. In general, the sensation returns slowly over several weeks, and rarely, months.
After surgery, some temporary reductions or modifications in the sense of smell or taste are typical. Due to the disruption of some nerves in the nose during the surgery. Within the first week after the procedure, these changes will begin to improve.
You need to be aware that swelling from the surgery will make the nose appear wider temporarily, and the tip will turn up more and be less refined than desirable. You will notice that the swelling on your nose bridge will improve faster than the swelling on the tip of your nose. A cause for alarm should not be this. In the first few weeks after the operation, all the swelling in your nose will substantially improve. Although much of the swelling will be resolved in a few months, your nose will continue to improve after surgery for up to one year. In general, patients who have only undergone septal surgery do not have any significant swelling outside the nose.
Accutane, radiation therapy to the head or neck, steroids or immunosuppressive agents were administered. For this procedure, immunosuppressed patients (HIV positive, chemotherapy, AIDS, etc.) and patients with certain autoimmune disorders may not be good candidates because of the risks of poor healing and infection leading to permanent scarring. Poor aesthetic outcomes may be far more significant. If you have any of these problems before the operation, you must inform your plastic surgeon.
Call Us Quickly If You Notice Any Of The Following:
- An unusual amount of nose bleeding. Any considerable re-injury to the nose.
- A substantial progressive increase in pain that is not quickly alleviated by taking your prescribed medication
Do not hesitate to reach us through the answering service if any of the above occurred after regular clinic hours.
How Do I Care For Myself After Surgery?
Please make arrangements to have someone drive you to and from your surgery. It is highly recommended to have someone stay with you for at least the first night after your surgery. Before your surgery, be sure to complete your prescriptions because it means one less thing for you to worry about afterward.
If you squirt saline mist spray, it would be best to place a small dab of either vaseline or antibiotic ointment inside your nose 4 to 6 times a day, starting on the first day after surgery. This will reduce nasal crusting and make you feel more at ease. Both the saline spray and the antibiotic ointment are available without a prescription at drugstores. To decrease nasal crusting, a Q-tip moistened with hydrogen peroxide may be swabbed in the nose 2 to 3 times per day.
Arrive in loose, comfortable clothing for your operation. Rather than pull over your head, your top should button or zip.
Take the medication, antibiotics, or painkillers only as prescribed by the clinic. Unless you discuss it with your surgeon first, please do not take any aspirin or any anti-inflammatory compounds for two weeks before and two weeks after your surgery.
You should not smoke for at least two weeks before surgery and two weeks after surgery if you are a smoker. Your circulation is inhibited by smoking and chewing tobacco and can significantly compromise your surgical outcome.
You may use cold, neat compresses or ice wrapped in a dry cloth to minimize swelling. For the first twenty-four hours after surgery, apply this gently to your closed eyes four to six times a day.
Sleep with a raised head during the first week after surgery.
After the operation, you should not blow your nose for two weeks, as it can interrupt proper healing and cause bleeding. Sneeze with your mouth wide open if you have to sneeze, as this will minimize any nose disruption.
Do not allow your nose to become wet at any time if an external nasal dressing is used. You may take a shower or bath the day after surgery, but do not let the spray strike your nose. Unless instructed by your plastic surgeon to do so, do not rub or massage your nose.
It would be best if you did not rest your glasses on the bridge of your nose for the first month after rhinoplasty. Either wear contact lenses or use a little tape from your forehead to suspend the glasses. As changes in the shape of the nose may alter the resting place for your glasses, you should be aware that your glasses may have to be readjusted. Patients undergoing a single septoplasty are usually allowed to wear their glasses on the day following the operation.
Avoiding the sun and using sunblock are essential for six months after rhinoplasty. Sun exposure may lead to reddish discoloration of the nose’s skin in the long term. There is no increased risk of discoloration in patients undergoing septoplasty alone. Do not travel for 10 to 14 days after nasal surgery to prevent sinus blockage from occurring.
Usually, inside the nose, your surgeon will use dissolvable sutures that will disappear in a few weeks. Any outer sutures should be kept dry and clean. They should be removed within 5 to 7 days after surgery if non-dissolvable sutures are used on external incisions.
If you did not do vigorous exercise, it would be best to avoid any significant physical exertion, lifting, or straining for at least three weeks after your surgery, as this activity could interfere with your wound healing and cause bleeding from taking it easy. However, while healing, your nose will not feel pain. It continues to be vulnerable to injury. Be careful not to squeeze it or bump it. Be aware that kids and pets are the most common sources of inadvertent damage to your nose after surgery.
Approximate recovery after rhinoplasty is as follows:
- DAY 1: Return home. Use cold compresses for 24 hours-some swelling and bruising, mild pain. Change mustache dressing as required (often 10 to 20 times).
- DAY 2-3: Maximum bruising and swelling.
- DAYS 5-14: External stitches removed or dissolving. Internal and external nasal dressings were removed by your plastic surgeon. Bruising going away.
- WEEK 2-4: Much of the swelling has begun to go away. Breathing better.
- 1 YEAR: Enjoy your final result