Rhinoplasty, also known as nasal surgery or a “nose job,” is surgery that reshapes the nose either for cosmetic or health reasons. Your nose is a focal point of your face and the goal of nasal surgery is to create a beautiful natural-looking nose that suits you and is in proportion to your other features. Specifically, nasal surgery can be done to correct structural problems, such as a large dorsal hump or a crooked nose, or to make more subtle changes to your nose’s shape, size, and general appearance. It can also be done to reconstruct the nasal passageways in order to correct functional problems, such as a deviated septum that is causing breathing difficulties.
With both the open and closed approaches, the details of the technique used can vary considerably depending on the patient and the goals of the surgery. Rhinoplasty is always done under general anesthetic and usually the patient goes home the same day. For people with very subtle contour irregularities, non-surgical techniques can sometime be used to correct these. Injectable fillers or fat grafts can be used to fill in minor depressions. The results are subtle and may not last, depending on the filler used.
While severe pain is unusual, your face may feel puffy, your nose may ache, and you may have a dull headache post-surgery. Extensive swelling, bruising, and skin discoloration to the nasal area and the eyes is very common and usually will subside within 3 weeks. Less obvious swelling to the nose and tip of the nose will subside slowly and may be seen for months following your operation. Any external scars will take 6-12 months to soften and fade. The final results may not be apparent for a year or more.
Depending on your job duties, you will need to have 1-3 weeks off of work or school after your surgery. Light activity can be resumed the next day but heavy lifting should be avoided for a few weeks, so parents of young children may want extra help during this time.