Rhinoplasty Risks & Side Effects

Rhinoplasty Risks & Side Effects

Reading Time for This Rhinoplasty Article : 9 minutes

Rhinoplasty Risks & Side Effects

What are the risks of rhinoplasty?

The decision to have plastic surgery is extremely personal. You will have to decide if the benefits will achieve your goals and if the risks and potential complications of rhinoplasty 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 and any risks or potential complications.

Choosing a qualified cosmetic surgeon can significantly reduce the health risks associated with rhinoplasty. Patients should use their consultation as an opportunity to ask questions about the procedure, including its risks, benefits, and side effects. In addition, following your surgeon’s instructions for pre-and post-surgery care will help to avoid health complications.

Rhinoplasty surgery risks include:

  • Anesthesia risks
  • Infection
  • Poor wound healing or scarring
  • Change in skin sensation
  • Nasal septal perforation (a hole in the nasal septum) is rare. Additional surgical treatment may be necessary to repair the septum but it may be impossible to correct this complication
  • Unsatisfactory nasal appearance
  • Skin discoloration
  • Possibility of revisional surgery
  • Recurring nosebleeds
  • Difficulty breathing through your nose
  • Permanent numbness in and around your nose
  • Possibility of an uneven-looking nose
  • Pain, discoloration or swelling that may persist
  • Scarring
  • Hole in the septum (septal perforation)
  • Numbness
  • Scarring at the base of the nose
  • Swelling
  • Permanent nerve damage
  • Under-or over- correction that necessitates revision rhinoplasty.

These risks and others will be fully discussed prior to your consent. It is important that you address all your questions directly with your plastic surgeon.

Any Surgery Risks for nose job rhinoplasty

When it comes to understanding the risks of plastic surgery, it is important to consider those associated with any surgery, as well as the dangers of the specific procedure. These risks apply to revision and ethnic rhinoplasty as well and should be discussed in full detail with your surgeon, prior to receiving surgery.

The potential rhinoplasty risks associated with all surgeries include:

  • Bleeding
  • Infection
  • Adverse Reaction to Anesthesia
  • Hematoma (when blood collects under the skin)

Rhinoplasty surgery Side Effects

In addition to health risks associated with the rhinoplasty procedure, there are a number of potential short-term side effects. Because rhinoplasty surgery is a highly individualized procedure, the side effects experienced will vary by each patient. Taking a moment to learn about these side effects- what they are and how long they’ll last- should help you feel more confident about this important decision, and more comfortable about the outlook for your rhinoplasty procedure.

Pain after rhinoplasty nose job

Nose surgery is one of the most powerful ways to enhance your appearance. However, because it requires extensive alterations of nasal bone and cartilage, patients may experience pain or discomfort following the procedure. Fortunately, this discomfort is usually minor and most patients find that over-the-counter analgesics are enough to manage this pain. For patients who are particularly sensitive to pain, your rhinoplasty surgeon may be able to prescribe stronger pain medication.

Swelling after rhinoplasty nose job

One of the most common side effects from rhinoplasty is swelling around the eyes and nose. The swelling is most noticeable in the days following surgery, but largely subsides after about two weeks. It is important to note, however, that some minor swelling may be present for up to six months following rhinoplasty surgery. The final results of rhinoplasty are typically seen in one year.

Bruising after rhinoplasty nose job

Bruising is another side effect that is often associated with rhinoplasty. The degree of bruising that follows surgery will vary depending on patient sensitivity and the extent of the surgery itself. This bruising is usually contained to the area around the eyes and can last for up to ten days. While bruising is not a sign of any more serious complications, you should monitor your condition in the days following surgery. If anything seems abnormal, your physician can advise you as to whether any measures besides rest and time are necessary during your rhinoplasty recovery.

When undergoing rhinoplasty surgery, you are likely most concerned with the post-operative results. Will the bump in my nose have disappeared? Will my nose look smaller? Will the tip be reshaped in the way I had imagined? These questions and others are natural, but when considering the benefits, it is also important to understand the risks involved.

During your consultation and before surgery, your plastic surgery will apprise you of the mechanics of the procedure, but also the possible risks involved. To make sure you completely appreciate the risks of the procedure, you will meet with your surgeon and/or a member of your surgeon’s staff, who will ask you to sign various consent forms.

Remember that you can minimize the likelihood of risks by quitting smoking, discontinuing use of certain medications, maintaining a healthy diet, and selecting a board-certified, well-regarded plastic surgeon. Surgeons double board-certified in both Facial Plastic Surgery and Otolaryngology are extensively trained in the function and aesthetics of the nose. Read below for more information about the common risks of a rhinoplasty procedure.

Bleeding after rhinoplasty nose job

Blood loss is perhaps the most common risk of rhinoplasty. Your nose is comprised of delicate blood vessels that may be damaged during surgery. Most patients lose approximately 50 to 150 mL of blood during the procedure, and a fraction of that group experience substantial blood loss after surgery. Bleeding can occur if you fail to follow your doctor’s post-op instructions, or if you blow your nose too forcefully. While rare, it is also possible to develop a severe nosebleed, in which the loss of blood is so significant that you may require a blood transfusion.

Your risk of blood loss also increases if you are taking certain medications. Be sure to consult with your doctor about any medications (whether prescription or over-the-counter) that you are currently taking. Certain medications such as Coumadin, Ibuprofen or aspirin act as blood thinners, which increase the likelihood of bleeding.

Anesthesia Reactions after rhinoplasty nose job

Surgeons use anesthesia when performing a rhinoplasty to reduce pain and make the procedure safer. There are two types of anesthesia: local and general. The type of anesthesia your doctor will recommend depends upon the type of rhinoplasty you select and the preference of the surgeon.

Local anesthesia is used for less invasive surgeries, meaning only your nasal area will be numbed. You will be somewhat awake during the procedure, and will feel somewhat groggy both during and after surgery.

General anesthesia is usually recommended for a more invasive rhinoplasty procedure. This is a more common type of anesthesia that patients select, since many prefer not to be awake during the surgery. An anesthesiologist intravenously administers medications that will help you fall into a deep sleep. A tube is used to ensure the airway is protected during surgery.

Monitored Anesthesia Care (MAC) is also referred to as Twilight Anesthesia. It is between local and general anesthesia where the patient will fade in and out of consciousness during the procedure. A breathing tube is not used and the breathing of the patient needs to be closely monitored.

It is important for your doctor to perform a physical to make sure your health is optimized before surgery. You will also be asked to fill out various questionnaires. These forms require disclosure of whether you have experienced adverse side effects with to general anesthesia in the past, and whether your family history includes adverse reactions.

Nasal Obstruction after rhinoplasty nose job

Rhinoplasty changes the outward appearance of your nose, but what you may not know is that the procedure may also change the way you breathe. A rhinoplasty may also be performed to correct interior structural problems, like a deviated septum or other abnormalities. A rhinoplasty surgery can result in a smaller or collapsed nose, making it difficult to breathe.

The nose can shift and scar when healing that can block the airway as well. The decreased sensation from incisions in the nose can also make it feel the nose is obstructed. There is a paradoxical sense of nasal obstruction when the nose is too open and too much air enters the nasal cavities. Breathing is a delicate balance that needs to be maintained by preserving as much of the structure of the nose as possible.

While a rhinoplasty may result in a more attractive-looking nose, it may not efficiently reduce airway obstructions and may cause a previously deviated septum to become more symptomatic. During your initial consultation, make sure you make your doctor aware of any respiratory problems you’ve experienced recently or in the past. Together you can create an effective plan for a creating a nose that not only looks flawless on the outside, but also functions well on the inside.

If your doctor is a general plastic surgeon, he may advise you to have surgery with an ENT surgeon at the same time. He may also ask to see an ENT surgeon after your surgery to address breathing issues. Considering a surgeon who is double board-certified in both Facial Plastic Surgery and Otolaryngology is an efficient way to correct functionality and aesthetics at the same time.

Unrealistic Expectations of rhinoplasty

If you consult a doctor about a rhinoplasty, there is always a possibility that you will not be happy with the result after the bandages come off and the swelling has subsided. Time is always needed to allow the healing process to take place. The surgery is in control of the surgeon, but healing is something your body will do on its own. You can improve healing by taking care of yourself and following instructions.

Being realistic about what to expect after surgery is paramount. You and your doctor need to engager in honest communication with one another. The results of your rhinoplasty depend heavily on many factors related to your physical and psychological make-up.

While medical technology has allowed rhinoplasty to evolve tremendously in recent years, sometimes even the most talented and precise surgeons simply cannot change parts of the nose to the extent you desire if certain foundational “tools” are lacking – meaning that certain attributes such as ethnicity, thickness of the skin and bone structure can affect whether it’s possible for a surgeon to sculpt the “perfect nose.”

Talk to your doctor about your personal goals of a rhinoplasty and ask about any potential limitations. Remember to balance your desire for an improved cosmetic results with realistic expectations.

A great way for you and your doctor to decide upon the best result for your nose is through the use of computer-imaging software. Dr. Bennett uses the most state-of-the-art technology whereby a photo of your current nose can be reshaped using a virtual demonstration. After you have both decided upon a cosmetically improved, feasible result, Dr. Bennett will use that image as a guide during surgery. Of course, as with everything in life, results may vary.

Lastly, don’t forget that if you are still unhappy with the results of your rhinoplasty, it is possible to undergo a second surgery, called a revision rhinoplasty, whereby changes are made to the areas of your nose that you are displeased with. Approximately ten percent of patients for any surgeon undergo a revision rhinoplasty to correct these problems.

Pain after rhinoplasty nose job

Depending upon the changes your surgeon makes to your nose, you may experience post-operative pain. The majority of patients feel a minor amount of pain, which is normal and can be remedied by prescription painkillers or analgesics. A small percentage of rhinoplasty patients may experience more pain, due to broad modifications made to the nasal bone and cartilage.

Before the procedure, your doctor will ask questions to assess your level of pain tolerance and determine whether you are particularly sensitive to pain. Dr. Bennett prescribes patients with a mild prescription painkiller in the event of pain, but most patients report only requiring the medicine for a day or two, if that.

Your doctor should be made aware of severe pain you experience during recovery. Persistent pain after surgery can sometimes last even after the swelling has gone down.

Bruising after rhinoplasty nose job

Bruising is a very common risk of rhinoplasty. Similar to pain, the severity of bruising is directly linked to the degree of modifications made to your nose. If you notice bruising, it will likely be limited to the areas around your eyes and will take about a week to heal.

While bruising is a more common side effect, take note of the amount of bruising, and make sure that it is diminishing as each day passes. Abnormal bruising should be reported to your doctor, who may recommend increased bed rest or more intensive recommendations.

Infection after rhinoplasty nose job

Infection is a very rare risk of rhinoplasty because the nose has such a robust blood supply. As with other complications, awareness is key. Possible signs of infection include: a high temperature, inflammation, a foul smelling nasal discharge, or abnormal swelling or pain. Use your doctors instructions combined with your intuition to determine whether you should take steps to inform your doctor or 911 of a possible infection. Grafts inside the nose increase the risk of infection because of increased areas of low blood supply.

Reduce Risks of nose job rhinoplasty

Stay Informed & Communicate with your Doctor

To reduce the likelihood of the risks outlined above, Rhinoplasty surgeon reminds patients to follow instructions and to ask questions that relate to your concerns. It is typical to feel a combination of elation, stress and anxiety about your upcoming rhinoplasty, but do not feel reluctant to disclose any worries to your surgeon.

After your surgery,the surgeon frequently checks in with his patients to make sure they are recovering properly and are not experiencing any abnormal symptoms. He also encourages patients to contact him directly. Of course, prepared to call 911 in the event of an severe emergency, including severe shortness of breath, chest pain or heart palpitations.

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