Nose surgery, or rhinoplasty, is sometimes referred to as "nose reshaping" or a "nose job." It can improve the appearance and proportion of your nose, or correct a breathing problem associate with the nose.
Rhinoplasty Risks & Safety Information
The decision to have nose surgery is extremely personal and you’ll have to decide if the benefits will fulfill your goals and if the risks and potential rhinoplasty complications are acceptable. Your plastic surgeon and/or staff will explain in detail the risks associated with surgery. You will be asked to sign consent forms to ensure that you fully understand the procedure you will undergo and any risks or potential complications.
The practice of medicine and surgery is not an exact science. Although good results are expected, there is no guarantee. In some situations, it may not be possible to achieve optimal results with a single surgical procedure. Another minor surgery may be necessary to reach the intended aesthetic goal.
Following your physician’s instructions is key to the success of your surgery. It is important that the surgical incisions are not subjected to excessive force, abrasion, or motion during your recovery from rhinoplasty. Your doctor will give you specific instructions on how to care for yourself.
Rhinoplasty surgery steps
Step 1 – Anesthesia
Medications are administered for your comfort during rhinoplasty surgery. The choices include intravenous sedation or general anesthesia. Your doctor will recommend the best choice for you.
Step 2 – The incision
Surgery of the nose is performed either using a closed procedure, where incisions are hidden inside the nose, or an open procedure, where an incision is made across the columella, the narrow strip of tissue that separates the nostrils.
Through these incisions, the soft tissues that cover the nose are gently raised, allowing access to reshape the structure of the nose.
Step 3 – Reshaping the nose structure
Surgery of the nose can reduce or augment nasal structures with the use of cartilage grafted from other areas of your body.
Most commonly, pieces of cartilage from the septum, the partition in the middle of the nose, is used for this purpose.
Occasionally a piece of cartilage from the ear and rarely a section of rib cartilage can be used.
Step 4 – Correcting a deviated septum
If the septum is deviated, it is now straightened and the projections inside the nose are reduced to improve breathing.
Step 5 – Closing the incision
Once the underlying structure of the nose is sculpted to the desired shape, nasal skin and tissue is redraped and incisions are closed. Additional incisions may be placed in the natural creases of the nostrils to alter their size.
Step 6 – See the results
Splints and internal tubes will likely support the nose as it begins to heal for approximately one week.
While initial swelling subsides within a few weeks, it may take up to a year for your new nasal contour to fully refine.
During this time you may notice gradual changes in the appearance of your nose as it refines to a more permanent outcome. Swelling may come and go and worsen in the morning during the first year following your nose surgery.
- A nose surgery procedure to improve an obstructed airway requires careful evaluation of the nasal structure as it relates to airflow and breathing. Correction of a deviated septum, one of the most common causes of breathing impairment, is achieved by adjusting the nasal structure to produce better alignment.