Rhinoplasty

Woman's nose and mouthRhinoplasty, or surgery to reshape the nose, is one of the most common of all plastic surgery procedures. Rhinoplasty can reduce or increase the size of your nose, reshape the tip or bridge, narrow the span of the nostrils or change the angle between the nose and upper lip. You can also correct a birth defect or injury, or help relieve some breathing problems.

Understanding the procedure

Rhinoplasty usually takes an hour or two, though complicated procedures may take longer. During surgery the skin of the nose is separated from its supporting structure of bone and cartilage, which is then sculpted into the desired shape. The nature of the sculpting will depend on your problem and surgery techniques, we must apply. Finally, skin is covered on the new structure.

Many plastic surgeons perform rhinoplasty from within the nose, making their incision inside the nostrils. Others prefer an “open” procedure, especially in more complicated cases, make a small incision in the columella, the vertical strip of tissue separating the nostrils.

When surgery is completed, a splint will be applied to help your nose maintain its new shape. stuffed nose or soft plastic splints also may be placed in nostrils to stabilize septum, the dividing wall between the air ducts.
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Are you a good candidate?

Rhinoplasty can enhance your appearance and your self-confidence, but not necessarily change your looks to match your ideal or cause other people to treat you differently. Before deciding to have surgery, think carefully about your expectations and discuss them with Dr. Cardenas during consultaion.

The best candidates for rhinoplasty are people looking for improvement, not perfection, the way they look. If you are physically healthy, psychologically stable and realistic in your expectations, you can be a good candidate.

Rhinoplasty can be performed to meet aesthetic goals or for reconstructive purposes to correct birth defects or breathing problems.

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Preparation / anesthesia

Based on a review of the patient’s medical history may be necessary for the doctor to perform additional blood tests and an electrocardiogram before continuing with the procedure. The procedure is usually performed under general anesthesia by an anesthesiologist.

Incisions

Usually the incisions for rhinoplasty are the base of the nose and the inside of the nostrils.

Risk

When rhinoplasty is performed by a qualified plastic surgeon, complications are infrequent and usually minor. However, there is always a possibility of complications, including infection, nosebleed, or a reaction to anesthesia. You can reduce your risks by closely following your surgeon’s instructions both before and after surgery.

After surgery, small burst blood vessels may appear as tiny red spots on the skin surface and these are usually minor but may be permanent. As for scarring, when rhinoplasty is performed from inside the nose, no visible scarring at all, when an “open” technique is used, or when the procedure requires the narrowing of the nostrils, small scars at the base of the nose are usually not visible.

In about one in ten, a second procedure may be necessary, for example, to correct a minor deformity. Such cases are unpredictable and occur even in patients of more experienced surgeons. Corrective surgery is usually minor.

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Aftercare

After surgery, especially during the first four hours of your face will feel puffy, your nose may ache, and you may have a headache. You can control any discomfort with the medication for moderate pain. Plan to stay in bed with your head elevated.

A little bleeding is common during the first days after surgery, and you may continue to feel some congestion or numbness in several weeks. Your surgeon will probably ask you not to blow your nose for a week or so, while the tissues heal.

If you have nasal packing is removed after a few days and feel much more comfortable. At the end of one or, occasionally, two weeks, all dressings, splints and stitches should be removed.

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Recovery

Most rhinoplasty patients are moving in two days, and to return to school or sedentary work a week or so after surgery. It will be several weeks, however, before it is fully up to date.

You will notice swelling and bruising around the eyes will increase at first, reaching a peak after two or three days. Applying cold compresses will reduce this swelling and make you feel a little better. In any case, you will feel much better than you look. Most swelling and bruising will disappear in two weeks or so.