Rhinoplasty, also referred to as a nose job, is one of the most common plastic surgery procedures performed today. This surgery can improve the appearance of the nose by reshaping, reducing or augmenting the nose, removing a hump, narrowing the nostril width, or changing the angle between the nose and mouth. Rhinoplasty can also correct injuries, birth defects and certain breathing problems.
Rhinoplasty may be for you if you feel that your nose is too large, too small, too flat, too pointed, crooked or if you are experiencing certain breathing problems. Surgery can improve all or part of the nose to improve the nasal appearance and function and make the nose more harmonious with the other facial features. Candidates for surgery are generally healthy, do not smoke and have realistic goals for improvement. Younger patients should be at least 13 years of age and should have completed their facial growth.
Dr. Miller performs rhinoplasty on an outpatient basis at the JCAHO Accredited office-based surgery facility at Gotham Plastic Surgery of New York City. Surgical times average 1 to 2.5 hours and either general anesthesia or IV sedation may be used. Most incisions are made on the inside of the nostrils which is referred to as closed rhinoplasty. In some cases, a small, well-hidden incision is made on the underside of the nose in what is referred to as open rhinoplasty. Working through the incisions, the bone and cartilage are sculpted to the new shape and the stitches are closed. If the patient has a deviated septum, breathing will be improved by adjusting the septum and inner structures of the nose.
A cast will be applied to the nose after surgery and this will be removed after approximately one week. In some cases, nasal packing is used to control bleeding and this is removed on the morning after surgery. Sutures are removed in several days. Most patients experience little pain during their recovery, though pain medication can be taken if necessary. Swelling, bruising and stuffiness are common. Due to the swelling, patients may experience some difficulty breathing through the nose during the first few days.
The swelling and bruising will fade over the next several weeks. Most patients find that they are well enough to return to work after about one week, though strenuous physical activity should not be resumed for at least three to six weeks. While contact lenses can be worn immediately after surgery, eye glasses should be taped to the forehead or propped on the cheeks for up to seven weeks after surgery.