Rhinoplasty (Nose Surgery)
One of the most common plastic surgery procedures, rhinoplasty is performed to reshape, reduce or augment a person's nose. It can also remove a hump, narrow nostril width or change the angle between the nose and the mouth, or correct injury, birth defects or other problems that affect breathing. Results depend on the patient's nasal bone and cartilage structure, facial shape, skin thickness and age (teenagers should have had their growth spurt). Insurance may cover rhinoplasty if it is done for reconstructive or medical reasons, but likely not for cosmetic purposes.
Rhinoplasty is usually an outpatient procedure performed under either local or general anesthesia. It lasts one to two hours unless more extensive work needs to be done.
Dr. Walden uses one of two techniques: the incision is made either within the nostrils, which completely hides the scars, or across the columella (the vertical strip of tissue separating the nostrils), which leaves small scars that are hidden on the underside of the base. In both procedures, the skin is lifted, the bone and cartilage sculpted, and the skin replaced and stitched closed.
For a short time after surgery you may experience puffiness, nose ache or a dull headache, some swelling and bruising, bleeding or stuffiness. Most patients feel like themselves within two days, and return to work in about a week. Contact lenses can be worn immediately but glasses will have to be taped to your forehead or propped on your cheeks for up to seven weeks.
Complications are rare and, when they occur, minor. These may include infection, nosebleed or a reaction to the anesthesia.