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Why is an X-ray Not Helpful in Post-op Monitoring After Rhinoplasty, to Detect if Bone Has Moved?

i want to know if my bone on bridge has moved or if it is just a bump due to callus/ swelling. can an xray not tell me this? why doesnt any doctor take an xray before or after a rhinoplasty procedure? all major surgeries involve xrays. so why not a rhinoplasty?

Doctor Answers (3)

X Ray After Rhinoplasty


An x-ray for nasal bone evaluation is not a sensitive test. The bones are so small and fragile that it is most likely that you will not pick up any defect at all. As a Rhinoplasty surgeon I rely heavily on my clinical physical examination of the nose to guide me. If I feel there is residual bone on the top or if the nasal bone fracture I have created has moved then I will suggest treatment. An x-ray plays little if any roll in delivering useful information in this situation. Even a nasal fracture may not show up on x-ray. Not a good test!

Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 14 reviews

Rhinoplasty surgery



  • Nasal bones x-rays do not give the kind of detail we need because of the all the other bones around the skull
  • Our physical exams are great at determining fractures, calluses, or changes in the bone
  • Plus you get exposed to radiation to your face and brain without any benefit to the surgeon or the patient
  • The best thing to do is to bring up your concerns with your surgeon and go from there

Best regards,

Nima Shemirani

Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

X rays to evaluate nasal fractures and nose bone problems

  • I rarely find nasal bone x rays helpful in evaluation of deformity and injury of the nose. When evaluating the nasal shape and function, plastic surgeons examine the skin, cartilage, bone and airway flow.  
  • If a visible or functional problem exists with one of these structures, then treatment may help, even if an x ray is negative for a fracture. I have also seen many x rays showing a fracture, though the patient has no visible deformity or airway blockage. In these cases, treatment is not necessary.  
  • Patient symptoms and physical exam usually mean more than an x ray. 
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 14 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.

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