Posts Tagged ‘rhinoplasty surgeon’

Rhinoplasty 101: (Almost) Everything You Need to Know

rhinoplasty250x250Whether you struggle to breathe through your nose or you’re uncomfortable with your appearance, rhinoplasty (or a “nose job”) may be the answer. Rhinoplasty is a very intricate procedure that requires great skill and precision. So choosing the right facial plastic surgeon is one of the most important steps toward a successful surgery.

How Do I Choose a Plastic Surgeon?

The first step is to schedule a consultation with a facial plastic surgeon who focuses on rhinoplasty. Getting at least two opinions is a great way to become aware of different concerns, considerations and differing styles of particular surgeons.

There are many different reasons to get rhinoplasty, and everyone has their own unique idea of what they would like their results to be. So it’s very important to discuss these issues in detail during your consultation.

It’s also important to know that your surgeon will stand by you if there are any complications or if you need further surgery. Ask about how they handle those situations. If you get the feeling that you wouldn’t be supported if you have concerns after your surgery, that doctor may not be right for you.

What Happens at an Initial Consultation?

You and your surgeon will discuss your desires and expectations. Sometimes computer imaging is used to help you both clarify what results you’re looking for and understand what you can realistically expect.

The surgeon will likely examine the outside and inside of your nose. They may also perform minor maneuvers to determine if there are functional issues, and possibly make recommendations based on their experience.

What Happens During Surgery?

Rhinoplasty typically takes anywhere from 90 minutes to 3 hours. Most often, it’s performed in an outpatient surgery center using general anesthesia. You’re able to go home once your surgery is complete, and will likely follow up with your surgeon within a week.

What Can I Expect Right After Surgery?

It’s common to have bloody drainage from your nose for the first 24 – 48 hours after surgery. Congestion is also very common during the recovery period. Pain medicine is usually prescribed for several days. You can expect discomfort, but significant pain is not the norm.

If your nose had to be broken as part of the narrowing or refining process, you may have tape and a cast for the first week. These will be removed at your 1-week appointment, which will be your first opportunity to see your new nose.

What Can I Expect During the Recovery Process?

Sometimes, patients are surprised with what they see when their bandages are removed. It’s important to remember that you will not see the “final” results from a rhinoplasty until one year after the surgery. Make sure to mention your concerns as they arise, but know that time and patience will alter and resolve most of them. Your surgeon may encourage you to wait while your body handles the healing process.

For the first 3 – 6 weeks, there will be significant fluctuation in tip and bridge swelling, as well as breathing changes. After the first 6 weeks, things start to stabilize more. You’ll most likely see your surgeon every few weeks to start with and then gradually increase time between visits.

What Can Emory Aesthetic Center Do for Me?

The Emory Aesthetic Center has experienced, board certified cosmetic surgeons that help guide you through every step of the process — from initial decisions to successful recovery. In addition to improving your appearance, we provide meticulous attention to detail and a comprehensive understanding of the functional aspects of nasal breathing.


or call us at 404-778-6880 to schedule a consultation

About Dr. Sethna

anita-sethna-avatarDr. Sethna understands that facial plastic and reconstructive surgery demand a marriage of science and artistry, and she enjoys using precision, skill, and vision to make her patients’ dreams reality. Dr. Sethna’s meticulous attention to detail and her passion for maintaining a natural look ensure optimum results for her patients.

A dedicated teacher, Dr. Sethna is devoted to assisting residents in facial trauma or reconstructive cases at Grady Hospital. She relishes the opportunity to educate residents and medical students in all aspects of patient care. Dr. Sethna has a strong interest in several areas of facial plastic surgery research and has presented at national meetings on the importance of resident and fellow education in rhinoplasty techniques and adjunctive measures to decrease discomfort during cosmetic procedures.

Rhinoplasty: Nose Job Surgery & Recovery

RhinoplastyFor many patients, rhinoplasty (or a “nose job”) is something they have considered for years but have delayed for fear of recovery or fear of the changes that may result. This is completely understandable. Undergoing this type of surgical procedure can change the way not only others see you, but also how you see yourself. Even small, millimeter changes can make a huge impact.

Patients presenting for consultation for nasal surgery often run the gamut from wishing for a small “bump” to be removed from the bridge, to major reconstruction involving both breathing concerns and cosmetic improvements. There’s no cookbook method of improving one’s nasal appearance. As cosmetic surgeons we strive to match your desires and goals with what is structurally sound and aesthetically pleasing.

The consultation itself is at least an hour-long process. The goal initially is to assess the breathing, structure and balance of the nose with other aspects of the face and to discuss, in detail, what your concerns are. This is the opportunity to bring up any worries about your appearance, and ask any and all questions related to recovery. Once the assessment is complete, we then discuss the plan for addressing the issues. It’s important for both the patient and surgeon to agree on what issues are, and what can be corrected and to what degree. This almost always involves a set of several photos being taken and reviewed, and sometimes involves computer imaging.

At the Emory Aesthetic Center, we perform computer imaging as a tool. Because rhinoplasty involves such a critical aspect of ones self-image, computer imaging can be a useful adjunct to pictures and drawings. It gives the patient and surgeon a method of mutual communication and education.

Once a decision has been made regarding surgery, what is the recovery process like and how long is it before results can be seen? I counsel my patients that recovery generally takes about 10 days – that’s when patients can return to work or school with much less discomfort. The recovery process can be quite varied – some patients take prescription pain medication for a few days and then switch to Tylenol; others require the pain medicine for a week or so. Swelling and bruising around the eyes, and swelling on the nose itself is also quite common, and starts to dissipate around 5-7 days but in some cases can last 10-14 days. The most common complaint is congestion, rather than pain. Because of the surgery inside the nose, swelling can cause difficulty breathing through the nose for about a week.

Patients return to the office for an evaluation the day after surgery for a quick checkup and to ask any follow-up questions, and then at one week to have the outside dressings removed. Although results can start to be seen when the dressings are removed, the final results are not seen for up to 1 year following surgery. This can be surprising for some – but because of the intricate system of drainage of the nose, the tip and bridge can stay slightly swollen, and only with the passage of some time, will it settle into its final contours. I request patients return frequently to monitor the healing process and ensure their concerns are addressed.

At the end of the day, rhinoplasty is a very personal and emotional decision. But if certain aspects of your nose make you uncomfortable, or don’t allow your personality to shine through, there is no reason to delay the decision to pursue surgery. At the very least, obtaining a consultation allows the surgeon to discuss how reasonable your expectations are for improvement and give you a plan for correction.