FAQ – Rhinoplasty
A rhinoplasty procedure is the accepted medical term which describes the process for nasal correction and reconstruction. Also referred to as the nose job, nose surgery or nasal reshaping, this procedure is designed to correct and enhance facial symmetry through proportionality to improve the overall appearance. The net result is improved patient self-esteem and an increase facial balance. There are a variety of aesthetic concerns that can be addressed through the rhinoplasty procedure which include:
- A nose profile that is too large
- Having a large bulbous tip
- A prominent bump on the bridge of the nose
- A nose which is either too wide or narrow
- A nasal tip that needs to be brought up or down
Rhinoplasty is a popular procedure that according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons almost 220,000 rhinoplasties are performed annually, which makes it one of the most common aesthetic plastic surgery procedures done in the United States. It is common knowledge that because of aesthetic skill required, the rhinoplasty is considered the most difficult cosmetic procedures to perform so it is important to choose the right physician.
Whether it is the size, a bump on the bride, a large profile, or the angle of the tip, consensus on self-image concerns by the majority of people and young adults is typically related to unhappiness about the nose. Because it is such a delicate procedure with so many unknowns, it is important to perform extensive due diligence when selecting an experienced plastic surgeon.
Make sure to ask the following questions about the rhinoplasty surgery:
- Are you board-certified?
- How many rhinoplasty procedures have you performed and is it a significant part of your practice?
- How many of these surgeries to you do annually?
- What is the revision rate?
- What is currently your most utilized rhinoplasty technique?
- Do you handle revisions if I need one in 12 months?
- Do you use morphing software so I can see a simulation?
- May I see before and after photos of your patients?
- Which medical societies are you a member?
- How do you rate my goals in terms of being realistic?
Dr. Robert W. Sheffield, M.D., F.A.C.S. is a Plastic and Reconstructive surgeon practicing in Santa Barbara, California. Board-certified, he received his training at aesthetic plastic surgery training at the prestigious University of Texas Southwestern Medical School in Dallas, Texas.
WHERE WILL TREATMENT BE PERFORMED?
Plastic Surgery will be performed in an accredited surgical center. For cost and convenience’s sake, these surgeries are performed on an outpatient basis in most instances. If the procedure is more complex, a short inpatient stay is required.
WHAT ARE MY ANESTHESIA OPTIONS?
General or local anesthesia is typically provided. The preferences of you and your surgeon and the extent of the procedure will help to make this decision.
Local anesthesia offers the patient a light sedation. The nose and its surrounding area are going to be numbed. General anesthesia allows the patient to sleep comfortably while the procedure is taking place. General anesthesia is also used for safety’s sake for the majority of these procedures.
WHAT HAPPENS IMMEDIATELY AFTER SURGERY?
The patient’s face is going to be puffy and will experience soreness for at least 24 hours after the procedure. Pain medication is going to be prescribed by the surgeon to alleviate this discomfort. The patient should plan to remain in bed and keep their head elevated on the first day.
A small amount of bleeding may occur during your first few days back at home. Any blowing of the nose should be avoided for at least a week so that the healing process is not disrupted in any way.
The nasal packing is taken out after the first 24 hours and patients experience far more comfortable once this step has been taken care of. Within one to two weeks, all of the remaining splints, stitches, and dressings are removed.
The bruising and swelling around the eyes will subside in time. The peak levels of bruising and swelling should take place about two or three days after the procedure takes place. A cold compress can be applied to reduce swelling and increase comfort. Much of the bruising and swelling should disappear within two weeks. Some subtle swelling could take a few months to subside.
WHAT IS THE RECOVERY PROCESS LIKE?
Most patients should be able to resume their normal routine within a week’s time. Feeling completely normal, on the other hand, may take several weeks. The surgeon’s detailed guidelines on the strenuous physical activity must be followed to the letter. As a general rule of thumb, any exercise that will cause a sudden increase to your blood pressure should be avoided for two to three weeks. Do not hit your nose or allow it to become sunburned. Exercise caution when using cosmetics.
Contact lenses can be worn after surgery and wearing glasses could be more a tad more difficult. Once the splint has been removed, the nose will still need to heal. Patients who need to wear glasses right away must tape them to their forehead or obtain a device that allows for their glasses to rest comfortably on their cheeks.
Frequent visits are going to be made to our offices in the months after your surgery has taken place. This gives us the chance to closely monitor your healing process. If there are any unusual symptoms taking place or you have any questions about the do’s and dont’s, be sure to call a surgeon right away.
WILL TREATMENT GIVE ME NOTICEABLE SCARS?
If the surgery is performed inside of the patient’s nose, no visible scarring will take place. The “open” technique leads to a small amount of scarring but none of it will be visible to the naked eye.