Thinking about getting your nose fixed? You may be checking this article out because you are interested in what a rhinoplasty surgery can do for you. Well, this cosmetic surgery procedure can offer a lot for its patients, from the aesthetic enhancement of their facial profile to the alteration and improvement of their breathing or respiratory problems related to a nasal structure defect or abnormality. But we understand that most people who are interested in knowing the details about rhinoplasty has one question in mind, ‘Is nose job safe?’. Here, we will tackle information about the general definition and description of a rhinoplasty procedure, its benefits, risks, and cost so we can determine the answer to the question, is nose job safe?
Rhinoplasty: An overview
Rhinoplasty is a surgery that improves and enhances the look and function of your nose. It is a unique plastic surgery procedure because it is not only intended for aesthetic changes, but it can also address medical conditions like sleep apnoea and deviated septum, as well as congenital defects and abnormalities.
What rhinoplasty can change
- Size of the nose
- Width of the nose bridge
- Position of the nostrils
- Removal of humps or depressions on the nasal bridge
- The appearance of the nasal tip
- Projection of the nostrils
- General asymmetry of the nose
This does not mean that when you undergo rhinoplasty surgery, you will have a perfect-looking nose. In fact, doctors and surgeons alike would reiterate that there is no such thing as a perfect nose. The results of a good rhinoplasty procedure can only make the nose proportioned to the facial profile of the patient.
Who can undergo a rhinoplasty?
Is nose job safe? In order to answer ‘yes’ to this question, surgeons and doctors conduct a comprehensive screening when it comes to selecting good candidates for the rhinoplasty surgery. We can say that not everyone can have a nose job surgery, especially if you do not satisfy the following characteristics:
Age. Minors or teens who are self-conscious about how their noses look need to wait a few more years before being allowed to undergo the surgery. Their nasal bone and other facial structures are still developing, so there can still be a possibility that their nasal profile may improve as they age. The exception for this factor is those babies with congenital defects like a cleft palate. Because this condition affects the respiration and nutrition of the baby, surgeons perform the rhinoplasty together with other reconstructive surgery procedures to address the problem as soon as possible.
Overall health. Aspiring patients who have bleeding or healing disorders may not be allowed to undergo any surgery procedure, because further or more serious complications post-surgery may be possible. Therefore, patients with hemophilia, diabetes, or other serious ailments may need to be monitored and be cleared by their respective health specialists so that they can safely undergo rhinoplasty.
Lifestyle. With this, we mean clients who are smoking will easily be crossed out from the list of potential candidates. Not only does smoking affect and cause so many systemic diseases, but it also interrupts with the natural healing process of the body, making the patient vulnerable to potential postoperative complications and infection.
Expectations. Idealists who would want to achieve the same nose as their Hollywood idol should have a one-on-one discussion with her rhinoplasty surgeon so he can curb her expectations. The dissatisfaction with the postoperative outcome is the result of having unrealistic expectations and lack of guidance from the surgeon.
Rhinoplasty procedure: The step-by-step guide
Initial consultation. This is, by far, the most important doctor visit that you would need for your nose job surgery. This is where all the things that you need to know and prepare are discussed. Your rhinoplasty surgeon would perform a comprehensive medical examination on you, so you can expect that he will request for laboratory tests and obtain some medical records to ensure that you are physically fit and ready for this major surgery. He would need information about your lifestyle (if you are smoking), allergies, medications, and family and past medical history. This is also the time that the surgeon would discuss the whole procedure and how it will be performed. Expectations during and after the surgery should be managed according to the explanation of the expert surgeon. He can show you a before-and-after gallery as his work portfolio, but it will just be a reference on how effective his procedures are and the results of your surgery will still be different from those.
The surgery. Your surgeon may opt to give you local anaesthesia with sedation or general anaesthesia, depending on the extent or scope of the surgical alteration and the level of anxiety you may be feeling. There are also two types of rhinoplasty techniques that he can choose from depending on your needs. Closed rhinoplasty is for minor changes that include incisions inside the nose. Open rhinoplasty technique uses the same incision plus a small external cut at the columella or the lower base of your nose in between nostrils. Using these incisions, the surgeon can effectively visualise the structures of the nose that needs to be reshaped and altered, like the bone and cartilages. The use of an implant or a transplanted bone or cartilage may also be inserted to add profile to the nose. After all the changes are performed, the surgeon may now close the cuts with absorbable sutures. He may insert nasal splints to your nostrils to support the new shape of your nose and to protect the overall results. Bandages are then used to cover the whole operative site.
Recovery. The whole surgery may last 1 1/2 to 3 hours, depending on the extent of alteration your nose job surgery entails. The first few hours immediately after the surgery is to be spent inside the recovery room where the surgical staff continues to monitor your vital signs until the effects of the anaesthesia wear off. Your surgeon may then allow you to go home provided that someone else will have to drive you home. He may also, however, instruct you to spend the night in the hospital should there be a need for you to be monitored on an extended basis.
Is nose job safe: The life after rhinoplasty
The first few days after your nose job may be the most uncomfortable days of your journey. You may complain of swelling, tenderness, difficulty breathing because of the splints, heavy bruising that reaches the eyes, the list of complaints just goes on and on. While these are natural post-operative effects of the surgery, your doctor would have given you ideas and ways on how to effectively cope. For instance, prescriptions for pain medications and anti-inflammatories may be given to address the discomfort. Sometimes, surgeons would also prescribe the use of an antibiotic medication as a prophylactic agent to fight the risk of infection.
Wound care instructions are to be given as well as that the incisions will heal nicely, followed by the disappearance of swelling, redness, bruising, and pain. He will also give you his instructions about when to visit him for a post-op follow-up so that he can assess the integrity and efficiency of the surgery as well as your overall healing.
Restrictions and limitations. You are requested to have complete rest for the first few days after surgery. As the days pass, you can gradually increase your capacity to move and perform activities with strict restrictions in regard to lifting and exerting pressure on the nose. In two weeks’ time, most patients are already allowed by their surgeons to return to work; however, make sure that the dos and don’ts about work restrictions and activity limitations are enforced so that further complications post-rhinoplasty are prevented.
Follow-up examination post-op. Your rhinoplasty surgeon can now see the results of the surgery and the effects of your nose job to your facial profile. This is the time for you to ask all your concerns about what to do after the recovery period, and how should you treat your nose once you are already out in the open and flaunting the effects of your cosmetic surgery. He will give you useful tips and advice on how to stay safe and how to take care of your newly-shaped nose. Here are some of the tips we can give you so your safety and satisfaction after your nose job surgery are secured.
- Do not put any ointment, lotion, or cream to your nose unless provided by the surgeon.
- Avoiding direct exposure to the sun so that discoloration of the nose is avoided.
- Ask the opinion of your surgeon about the scar removal creams that you may want to try and get his approval before using it (if you had an open rhinoplasty procedure).
- Train yourself to lie on your back when sleeping with your head elevated by several pillows. Putting pressure on the nose when sleeping sideways or (definitely!) on your stomach will alter the surgical changes of your rhinoplasty, especially if implants and bone or cartilage transplants are performed.
- Swelling may come and go for the next couple of months, or up to a year or so. Do not be alarmed as long as no pain and other complaints are present with it. You can use a cold compress to lessen the swelling.
- Avoid using eyeglasses or shades while the nose is still healing.
- Continue drinking plenty of water.
- Ensure that you visit your surgeon regularly and when he requests to check up on you and your post-surgical condition.
Is nose job safe?
Rhinoplasty is essentially a safe cosmetic surgery procedure. It is designed through various experiments and trials and errors in order to come up with the most effective and safe ways to improve the look and feel of your nose. However, no surgeon, no matter how skilled or experienced they are in performing this surgery, can ever promise that no risks and complications will ever happen before, during, and after your nose job. What they can do is to make sure that all variables and factors of the surgery that they can manipulate in order to avoid unforeseen circumstances are well taken care of. This way, the surgeon and the patient may be able to work together in ensuring that the effects of rhinoplasty may be uncomfortable at first (like all surgical procedures would in the beginning), but the end results are safe and satisfactory.