10 Things to Know About Rhinoplasty

Rhinoplasty, also known as a “nose job,” is common for patients who want to reshape or contour their nose for cosmetic or practical reasons. This surgical procedure is universally known as the most complicated and intricate of all plastic surgery techniques.


Before you go under the knife, here are a few things to keep in mind.

1. Choose Your Surgeon Carefully

Rhinoplasty requires specialized skills, so make sure your surgeon is certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS).  

More than this, make sure you trust the surgeon you choose to work with. Communication is important for several reasons and is essential to a successful rhinoplasty. In addition to making sure that you feel comfortable with your surgeon, ask to see before and after photos of their previous patients. This will help you form realistic expectations.

2. There Are Physical and Cosmetic Risks to Be Aware Of

Scarring, swelling, persistent pain—these are some of the potential risks involved with rhinoplasty. And because it is performed under general anesthesia, there can be added risks for patients who are overweight, have chronic health issues, or who smoke.

3. You Need to Have Realistic Expectations

While it often does present noticeable improvements to facial symmetry, rhinoplasty won’t necessarily change your overall look. The best cosmetic surgeries yield subtle results that make for a more harmonious, natural appearance. 

And while breathing may be improved, it may not be the 100 percent turnaround you may be expecting. There are limitations to everything, and rhinoplasty is no different. 

Having realistic expectations is the first step towards positive results. 

4. There Will Be Bruising

Bruising is part and parcel of any trauma to the body, and surgery is just that. Expect some bruising for at least a few days following surgery, and be aware that it can last for weeks or months.

5. Recovery Can Take a Long Time

Although most rhinoplasty patients can return to work after two or three weeks, patients are advised to take it easy for up to six weeks (including playing sports or any vigorous activity). 

Due to internal swelling, it can take up to a year for your surgery’s final result to be fully visible.

6. The Nose Changes Throughout Recovery

As mentioned above, it can take up to a year for all internal swelling to subside. Therefore, hold off on your final assessment of the procedure’s success until that time.

7. A Perfect Nose Is Not Guaranteed

No one (not even your surgeon) can predict the exact way your nose will heal. Therefore, there is no guarantee of a “perfect” nose. But a nose you feel better about is very achievable.

Subtle imperfections are a part of life, and, luckily, they are much more obvious to you than to anyone else. While your nose after rhinoplasty may not be one hundred percent perfectly sculpted, it will be a vast improvement that often brings significant satisfaction. 

8. Insurance May Help Cover the Cost, But Not Always

Some people undertake rhinoplasty to correct breathing abnormalities, such as a deviated septum. In these cases, insurance may cover some or all of the expenses. 

Insurance usually does not cover the cost of elective procedures; however, if you choose rhinoplasty due to a sustained injury, the ruling might be different. Check with your insurance provider to see what their policies say.

9. Patients Should Wait at Least Two Years Before Considering a Revision

Not every rhinoplasty goes right the first time. In some cases, revision rhinoplasty is needed to correct a concern that was not addressed the first time or repair a complication that developed during the healing process. While revision rhinoplasty is very successful, it cannot be performed immediately.

It takes time to get used to new facial contours. Be patient.

10. Be Sure to Communicate How You Want Your Nose to Look

There are many ways to refine or reshape the nose. The initial consultation is the time to thoroughly discuss your wishes and expectations with your surgeon.

Interested in Learning More?

If you are unhappy with the shape or contours of your nose and would like to know more about rhinoplasty, contact Dr. Frederick H. Corbin by calling, or filling out his online contact form.

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.