Rhinoplasty: Before Your Surgery
What is rhinoplasty?
Rhinoplasty is surgery to reshape your nose. It can be done to improve your appearance, fix a birth defect, or help you breathe better.
The doctor will make a cut inside your nostrils. This cut is called an incision. You might also get one across the skin between the nostrils. Then the doctor will pull back the skin. Parts of the bones and cartilage under the skin will be removed or reshaped. Then the doctor will put the skin back in place and close the incisions with stitches. You will have thin scars that will fade with time. You won't even see the scars inside the nostrils.
Sometimes a part of the outside of the nostrils is removed to make the nostrils smaller. This usually leaves a very thin scar along the side of the nostrils, where they attach to the cheek. You can hide the outside scars with makeup.
You will go home about 1 to 2 hours after surgery.
Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.
How do you prepare for surgery?
Surgery can be stressful. This information will help you understand what you can expect. And it will help you safely prepare for surgery.
Preparing for surgery
- Be sure you have someone to take you home. Anesthesia and pain medicine will make it unsafe for you to drive or get home on your own.
- Understand exactly what surgery is planned, along with the risks, benefits, and other options.
- If you take aspirin or some other blood thinner, ask your doctor if you should stop taking it before your surgery. Make sure that you understand exactly what your doctor wants you to do. These medicines increase the risk of bleeding.
- Tell your doctor ALL the medicines and natural health products you take. Some may increase the risk of problems during your surgery. Your doctor will tell you if you should stop taking any of them before the surgery and how soon to do it.
- Make sure your doctor and the hospital have a copy of your advance care plan. If you don't have one, you may want to prepare one. It lets others know your health care wishes. It's a good thing to have before any type of surgery or procedure.
What happens on the day of surgery?
Follow the instructions exactly about when to stop eating and drinking. If you don't, your surgery may be cancelled. If your doctor told you to take your medicines on the day of surgery, take them with only a sip of water.
Take a bath or shower before you come in for your surgery. Do not apply lotions, perfumes, deodorants, or nail polish.
Do not shave the surgical site yourself.
Take off all jewellery and piercings. And take out contact lenses, if you wear them.
At the hospital or surgery centre
Bring a picture ID.
The area for surgery is often marked to make sure there are no errors.
You will be kept comfortable and safe by your anesthesia provider. The anesthesia may make you sleep. Or it may just numb the area being worked on.
The surgery will take about 2 to 3 hours.
You will have a bandage under your nose. You will probably have a splint and may have packing in your nose.
When should you call your doctor?
- You have questions or concerns.
- You don't understand how to prepare for your surgery.
- You become ill before the surgery (such as fever, flu, or a cold).
- You need to reschedule or have changed your mind about having the surgery.
Where can you learn more?
Go to https://www.healthwise.net/patientEd
Enter A205 in the search box to learn more about "Rhinoplasty: Before Your Surgery".
Current as of: November 15, 2021
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:E. Gregory Thompson MD - Internal Medicine & Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine & Martin J. Gabica MD - Family Medicine & Keith A. Denkler MD - Plastic Surgery