Reshape, Reduce or Augment Your Nose with a Nose Job
Rhinoplasty, or nasal reshaping, is one of the most common plastic surgery procedures performed by Dr. Wiener at his practice in Chicago, IL. A rhinoplasty can reshape, reduce or augment a person’s nose to achieve a better contour, facial harmony, and boost self-confidence. Nose surgery may be performed as a reconstructive procedure to correct a birth defect or an injury such as a broken nose.
With years of rhinoplasty surgery experience behind him, Dr. Wiener combines a wide variety of techniques with artistic vision to improve the form, and in many cases, the function, of each nose. Combining Rhinoplasty with a Septoplasty (reshaping the cartilage that separates the nasal airway) or other airway modifications can effectively treat certain breathing and sinus problems.
During each rhinoplasty consultation, Dr. Wiener will take all of the time necessary to evaluate your specific problems and goals and formulate a plan for success. Pictures will be taken and a detailed discussion addressing all of your concerns will follow. He feels that effective communication with patients is extremely important in obtaining the best possible nose surgery results.
Rhinoplasty / Nose Surgery Procedure
A rhinoplasty is usually an outpatient procedure performed under IV sedation or a general anesthesia. In a Closed Rhinoplasty, incisions are made inside the nose. In an Open Rhinoplasty, the incision is made across the columella (the tissue between the nostrils) leaving a small scar that typically heals beautifully. The entire procedure generally lasts 1 to 2 hours.
With both methods, the procedure is as follows:
- Dr. Wiener gently lifts the soft tissues covering the nose.
- The bone and cartilage are sculpted to the desired shape. Any additional cartilage needed to augment the nose can often be taken from the septum.
- More extensive nose surgery repairs may require cartilage from behind the ear or even rib cartilage using a 1-inch incision beneath the breast.
- Often, the nasal bones may be repositioned.
- If you have a deviated septum or other breathing problems, Dr. Wiener will adjust the septum and the inner structures of the nose to improve breathing. The tissues are then closed. If the patient desires nostril reshaping, this is done as the final stage of the rhinoplasty.
Am I a candidate for nose surgery?
When it comes to nose surgery, the reasons fall into three categories:
- Appearance — Not liking your nose can really impact your self-confidence. That’s why aesthetics are the reason for most nose surgeries. For Dr. Wiener, this is probably 90 percent of his rhinoplasty procedures. There are many issues a person can have with his or her nose; these are the most common:
- The nose is out of proportion with the rest of the face
- The tip droops
- The tip is enlarged or bulbous
- There is a bump or depressions on the bridge of the nose
- The sidewalls are depressed
- The nostrils are excessively flared
- The nose is crooked or off-center
- Injury — From taking a puck off your nose in a pickup hockey game to bumping into a wall in the dark, impact on your nose can leave it permanently crooked or misshapen.
- Function — Restricted or blocked nasal passages can impact your sleep and your quality of life. Dr. Wiener can open restricted nasal passages and improve your breathing. Improving airflow can also be a secondary goal with a mainly cosmetic procedure.
Nose Surgery Results
The rhinoplasty results become gradually apparent as the days pass after surgery, and the swelling recedes. Some degree of swelling persists into the second or third week after surgery and very mild swelling may even be evident several months after surgery. Swelling may reappear from time to time in the first few months or even within the first year after the procedure. It is typically more noticeable in the morning and fades during the day.
In most cases, 70% to 80% of the swelling in the nose is gone within 2 to 3 weeks. The last 10% to 20% may take several more months to resolve. The final results of a rhinoplasty may take as long as 6 months to a year to show.
Contact lenses can be worn immediately, but glasses may need to be taped to your forehead or propped on your cheeks for the first 4 to 6 weeks after your surgery.
Rhinoplasty / Nose Surgery FAQs
Why Should I Get a Rhinoplasty?
A rhinoplasty is an excellent procedure for:
- Balancing the size of the nose with other facial features
- Modifying the width of the nose at the bridge
- Improving the nasal profile, including removing humps, bumps or depressions
- Contouring a nasal tip that is too large, boxy, drooping, or upturned
- Changing the angle between the nose and the upper lip
- Narrowing and reshaping the nostrils
- Correcting asymmetry or deviation
- Correcting blocked nasal airways due to a deviated septum, enlarged turbinates, or other airway issues
How Long Will it Take to Recover from a Nose Job?
For several days after rhinoplasty surgery, patients may experience puffiness to the nose and cheeks as well as mild pain in the nose or a dull headache. Bruising under the eyes, stiffness and a light discharge from the nose is also common. Often a padded splint is used to protect the nose and there may be some packing in the nasal airway for 1 to 2 days.
Most patients feel like themselves within several days and return to work in 7 to 10 days after the splint and any sutures have been removed. Light, low-impact workouts can begin as early as 3 to 4 weeks after surgery (stationary bike or brisk walk). More vigorous activity should be avoided for 6 weeks.
Will my breathing improve after rhinoplasty?
If you feel that your breathing is somewhat impeded, this is definitely something to discuss with Dr. Wiener during your consultation. That way he can plan to open your airways to some degree while he is making the cosmetic changes you seek. In these cases, breathing can be improved.
How Much Does Rhinoplasty Surgery Cost?
Insurance may cover the portion of the rhinoplasty that deals with improving the nasal airway or if it is done for reconstructive or medical reasons. The cosmetic aspects of rhinoplasty, however, are not covered by insurance. Dr. Wiener will tell you what may or may not be covered by insurance during your consultation.
What are the Possible Risks of Nose Surgery?
Complications are rare and when they occur, they are minor. These may include infection, a nosebleed or a reduction in breathing on one side of the nose.
What happens during my consultation for rhinoplasty?
Your consultation with Dr. Wiener is meant to be a give and take of information between the two of you. Dr. Wiener needs to evaluate your general health status and any medical conditions you may have, along with any medications you are currently taking.
Then he will move on to what you like about your nose and what you want to change. Is the surgery you’re seeking simply cosmetic, or are there breathing issues, as well? The two of you will discuss what options you have for making the changes you seek. He’ll measure your facial dimensions and take photographs of your face.
Dr. Wiener wants his rhinoplasty patients to have realistic expectations. He can’t place someone else’s nose, say that of a certain a celebrity, on your face. So, these consultations are meant to provide you with as much information as possible, everything short of the actual surgery. He wants to be sure you understand what can and cannot be achieved with this procedure.
How much pain is involved with this procedure?
This isn’t an overly painful recovery. It’s more a question of discomfort due to having to sleep upright, being careful not to bump or put any weight on your new nose, and swelling. Swelling can come and go for months, especially at night. Most of the pain involved will resolve within the first few days.
How Long will the Swelling Last and When Can I Expect Final Results?
The majority of the swelling will occur in the first 1 to 2 weeks after your rhinoplasty. By 3 weeks, 70% to 80% of the swelling will likely be resolved. The last 20% to 30%, however, may take several more months to completely resolve. Final results can take 6 months to a year.
It is important to remember that the small amount of swelling that may persist for longer than several weeks is usually subtle and the improvements to the nasal shape and airway are usually significantly evident after the first several weeks.
When Can I Exercise?
Typically, light exercise can be started as early as 3 weeks after your rhinoplasty depending on the degree of swelling. This would include low-impact activities such as an exercise bike or a brisk walk. More strenuous activity should be avoided for at least 6 weeks.
What is a Revision Rhinoplasty?
A Revision or Secondary Rhinoplasty will correct deformities caused by a previous operation on the nose. It is sometimes a more difficult procedure to perform because there is less cartilage to work with and there will be scarring beneath the skin from other procedures. However, skilled plastic surgeons can improve both the appearance and function of the nose in this situation, and Dr. Wiener has extensive experience in revisional rhinoplasty surgery and routinely corrects problems from procedures done elsewhere.
Can rhinoplasty be performed at any age?
This area of rhinoplasty procedures has changed. This surgery formerly was performed when patients were often too young, particularly young girls. Dr. Wiener doesn’t perform this surgery until the patient is finished with his or her facial growth. For girls, this is around age 15 or 16 at the absolute earliest. For boys (who mature a little slower than girls), the minimum age is 17. There is not a top limit, but older patients will face a more difficult recovery simply because the healing process isn’t as efficient as it is for younger patients.
Are there special preparations for rhinoplasty that I need to do?
Preparing for nose surgery involves the same preparation as any other surgery: stop smoking, adjust certain medications, stop taking aspirin and anti-inflammatory drugs. Dr. Wiener will discuss these with you during your consultation.