Rhinoplasty - Ways of Telling if a Nose is Still Swollen?

I had closed rhinoplasty 4 weeks ago. I'd ike to know if surgeons can make an estimate of how much swelling a person still has using factors such as, redness, numbness. In my case I have some soreness on the tip and bridge of the nose, the inside is still stuffy and I have a lot of numbness on the tip, particularly the left side which is still visibly bigger than the right (it looks wonky). Does numbness mean it is Defiantly still swollen? am quite worried about the left side at the moment.

Doctor Answers (3)

Numbness and swelling in rhinoplasty

+1
You are still swollen as it is only 4 weeks after surgery.  It usually takes 4-6 months for most of the swelling to go away, and a year to fully go away.  There is no correlation of numbness and swelling, just that they may be both present and they both take a long time to go away.  In general, almost all noses are numb right after a rhinoplasty. In most cases its the tip that is numb, but this numbness can extend down to the upper lip, and in rare cases some of the teeth. It is also not uncommon that one side of the nose is more numb than the other. There are nerves that are cut and stretched during a rhinoplasty, and it takes a long time for those nerves to start working again. This is true of an open as well as closed rhinoplasty, although it tends to be more extensive in open rhinoplasty. This could also be more extensive if a septoplasty is performed at the same time. This, along with the swelling, gives you a stiff, plastic type feel, and can give you an odd smile. However, the nerves will start working and again, and your nose stiffness will go away with time. This takes in most cases months, but can take years in rare cases. Extremely rarely, the numbness is permanent, although I have never seen such as case. In certain cases where an implant was used, numbness could be caused by compression against the implant, or if it happens years later, then an infected implant can cause numbness as well.
Best Wishes,
Pablo Prichard, MD


Phoenix Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 26 reviews

Is Nose Swollen 4 Weeks after Rhinoplasty?

+1

Thank you for the picture and a description of your observations about your nose, but neither were necessary. All noses are swollen and firm with decreased feeling 4 weeks after a rhinoplasty. As healing progresses, firmness is an obvious indication of residual swelling.Your nose will change over the next year. 

Richard W. Fleming, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 14 reviews

My nose looks asymmetric after rhinoplasty (photo).

+1

Worry is like a rocking chair... It keeps you busy, but doesn't get you anywhere.  You ARE still swollen.  In my experience, the nose becomes smaller and contours more well defined for 12-18 months after the rhinoplasty procedure.  If the shape is becoming worse, see your surgeon.  Injectable Radiesse or another product can improve asymmetries.

Steve Laverson, MD
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 38 reviews

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