What is a Rhinoplasty?
Rhinoplasty, commonly called a nose job, is a surgical alteration of the nose to improve its function or to change its appearance. Connecticut Board-Certified Plastic Surgeon, Dr. Gary Price, performs nose surgery to enhance facial features, repair a nose that has been deformed by trauma, and correct impaired breathing due to structural problems in the nose.
A rhinoplasty may be performed as a reconstructive procedure to correct a birth defect, a repair surgery to remedy an injury like a broken nose, or simply for cosmetic reasons. Sometimes the procedure is performed in conjunction with a septoplasty, a procedure to correct a deviated septum and improve breathing. In these cases, the operation effectively treats health and breathing problems, as well as improving the patient’s appearance.
Who is an Ideal Candidate for Rhinoplasty?
In order to be a candidate for a rhinoplasty procedure you must meet the following criteria:
- At least 13 years old so that facial growth is complete
- Overall good health
- Have realistic expectations about the outcome of the surgery
How Long does a Rhinoplasty typically take?
Rhinoplasty is usually an outpatient procedure performed under IV sedation or general anesthesia. It usually takes from 1 to 2 hours to complete. Patients return home the day of surgery.
What to expect from a Rhinoplasty
Rhinoplasty has several specific goals. Some facilitate breathing as well as to improve facial appearance. The procedure can change many aspects of the nose. During the rhinoplasty, Dr. Price may make your appearance more pleasing to you by:
- Decreasing the size of the nose and its parts
- Removing a hump on the nose
- Sculpting the shape of the tip or the bridge
- Reshaping the nostrils
- Repairing your nose after an injury
The Rhinoplasty Procedure
Connecticut Board-Certified Plastic Surgeon, Dr. Gary Price, uses one of two techniques when performing nose surgery. In a closed rhinoplasty, incisions are made within the nostrils. In an open rhinoplasty, the incision is made across the columella, the tissue between the nostrils.
With both methods, Dr. Gary Price gently lifts the soft tissues covering the nose. He then sculpts the bone and cartilage to the desired shape. Any additional cartilage needed to augment the nose can often be taken from the septum. If the patient has a deviated septum, Dr. Gary Price will adjust the septum and the inner structures of the nose to improve breathing. Then the tissues are re-draped and stitched closed. If the patient desires nostril reshaping, this is done as the final stage of rhinoplasty. Packing of the nose is rarely necessary, however molded splints are usually placed on the outside of the nose for at least a week.
Is every Rhinoplasty the same?
Since there is no one perfect shape, Connecticut patients who have a rhinoplasty can change the appearance of the nose to better suit their facial structure.
Septal Surgery for Breathing Problems
The nasal septum separates the nasal passages in the nose. The septum is made out of cartilage and thin bone. Due to birth defects or injury, some people have a deviated septum which can impair breathing. Dr. Price corrects a deviated septum by trimming and straightening the cartilage. This procedure can be performed as an outpatient procedure with local or general anesthesia and usually takes 1 to 2 hours. Incisions are made within the nose so there is no outward scarring.
In addition to the cosmetic and medical applications of rhinoplasty, there is a reconstructive aspect as well. When the nose is broken, it doesn’t always heal back in the same shape. Post-traumatic rhinoplasty performed by Connecticut Board-Certified Plastic Surgeon, Dr. Gary Price, can help restore the face to its former appearance before the injury.
Are there any restrictions in the weeks following Rhinoplasty?
While you will be able to resume normal activities about a week after surgery, you will have to protect your nose while it heals by observing the following directives during the post-operative period:
- Avoid strenuous activities for two weeks
- Use sunscreen of SPF 30 or higher
- Avoid constipation
- Avoid making exaggerated facial expressions
- Brush your teeth gently
- Avoid pulling clothing over your head
- Avoid blowing your nose
- Limit dietary sodium
- Ice packs may be used over the eyes, but should not be placed on the nose
Are there any risks involved?
As with any surgical procedure, there are risks involved in a rhinoplasty, including excessive bleeding, adverse reaction to anesthesia, and localized pain, discoloration or numbness. Occasionally, a patient may be dissatisfied with the cosmetic results of the operation and a second surgery, called a revision rhinoplasty, may be desired. Although much of the improvement achieved at surgery is obvious almost immediately, improvement in the nose occurs over many months as subtle swelling resolves. For most patients, however, a rhinoplasty is an uncomplicated procedure with pleasing results.
Before and After
Immediately after surgery, your nose and eyes may be bruised and swollen. During this period, you may experience some nasal pain or a dull headache, as well as some bleeding and drainage from your nose. Most patients are comfortable enough to return to regular activities in about a week. Contact lenses can be worn immediately after the procedure, and full exercise or athletic activity may resume after two weeks.
Schedule a Consultation
Are you ready to find out more about nose surgery? Request a consultation with board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Gary Price or call his office in Connecticut at (203) 453-6635. His office is convenient to patients from New Haven, Fairfield County and other surrounding areas in Connecticut.