Thinking of Rhinoplasty.

What is Rhinoplasty
Choosing your Surgeon
What should I expect from a consultation?
Can things go wrong?
The Operation

What is Rhinoplasty?

Rhinoplasty is a surgical procedure, usually done under general anaesthetic, in which the nose can be reduced or reshaped. Septorhinoplasty is the same type of operation but with the addition of correction of the septum (the wall between the two nasal cavities).
There are two types – closed and open. In a closed Rhinoplasty, all incisions are inside the nose and are not seen: an open Rhinoplasty implies that an external incision is made across the columella – the bridge of skin between the two nostrils underneath the nose. This incision usually heals well and is seldom noticeable. In our practice, the open approach is usually reserved for Septorhinoplasty or the very complicated Rhinoplasty.

Rhinoplasty is not one standard procedure; the surgeon must design his operation specifically to meet the requirements of that particular nose.  The design should be decided upon with the patient during the consultation.

Choosing your surgeon

Whether you choose an ENT, Plastic or Facio-Maxillary surgeon to reshape your nose, it is important that you have faith in his expertise, his qualifications, the care he provides and the hospital he operates in. Choosing a surgeon who is a consultant in the NHS is one way to ensure that he or she is qualified to operate on you and that your surgeon will be able to provide further care should it be required.   

What should I expect from a consultation?

Your surgeon should discuss with you all the features you dislike. A full examination of the face should then take place. Your surgeon can then decide whether your requests are practicable and what corrections are required to each part of the nose.
Enquiries of your general health must be made to ensure that you are fit to undergo a general anaesthetic without risk.
At the end of the consultation, both you and your surgeon should fully understand the aims of the operation.

Can things go wrong?

By and large, Rhinoplasty is relatively free of risk and complications but no surgeon can guarantee perfect results all the time. However, with careful, well planned surgery, complications are relatively uncommon.

  • Bleeding   This is very rare – in 25 years I have not had a patient bleed significantly in cosmetic rhinoplasty.
  • Pain – is not a feature of rhinoplasty. One may experience some discomfort over the nose and forehead but seldom severely. If increasing pain is felt during the 10 days convalescence,it may herald infection so seek the advice of your surgeon. This problem is rare in cosmetic rhinoplasty but may occur in septal surgery.
  • Bruising -  Bruising around the eyes and upper cheeks is unavoidable and may last 2 weeks. Though spectacular, it is not painful.
  • Scars – There are no scars in closed rhinoplasty; the open operation involves an incision across the columella. It usually heals well and is seldom noticeable. Do tell your surgeon if you have a tendency to thickened scars.
  • Skin Care - When the splint is removed, the skin of the nose may flake. Simple creams should be used to restore its condition. Please be aware that the skin is vulnerable to sunlight for six months so do protect it with high factor sunscreen.

The Operation

As surgeons’ procedures differ, I shall describe our own for example.

  • Admission is on the day of surgery. You must take nothing by mouth (even chewing gum) for 6 hours prior to your operation. You will be admitted by our nursing staff and then seen by my anaesthetic colleague and by me.
  • You will be fully anaesthetised during your operation and will feel nothing.
  • After the operation, most patients are sleepy for a few hours.
  • Pain control is given if necessary.
  • You will have a plastic splint over your nose for 1 week.
  • It is unlikely that you will have any packing in the nose unless the septum has been straightened.
  • After 7 days, splints and any external sutures will be removed.

Should you wish further information you can get in touch via the Contact Us page.