Rhinoplasty in India :)

Hello there, Realselfers. First of all, thank you...

Hello there, Realselfers. First of all, thank you all so much for all your reviews, photos, updates - without which I'd probably be lost and may have never found the courage to go through with this. I decided to share my experience because of how much your journeys helped mine and also, I didn't find one about getting a procedure in India, at least not a detailed post so I decided I needed to share my experience at the chance that it may help someone, whether they are getting it done in India or elsewhere.

Like a lot of you, I remember feeling like I was different, not in a good way, ever since I was a child. I've always been a bit of a nerd/geek so it didn't matter that much that my teeth were wonky or I had huge glasses or that I had, most prominently, a very pronounced dorsal hump.

There were comments made on it all the time, but that didn't bother me so much. It was my own perception of myself, the fact that I would consider myself less than my friends and contemporaries, simply because I was so concious of the way I looked. I wouldn't say I was vain, just that it felt like I never fit in.

As I grew older, I gravitated towards the arts and being from a film family, eventually chose that field. I'm into theatre, writing, films - all of which means I have a certain amount of exposure, however limited, in the media. (which is also why I won't be putting up full pics, sorry in advance - besides I didn't tell a soul about this expect close family). I ended up getting a nice haircut, got lens, then braces. It's been a makeover of sorts. I still looked like myself, only better - I think. My dentist described me as having "mid-facial excess". I always remembered that term as I started to research about rhinoplasty, never imagining that I'd actually go through with it. I think of myself as presentable, even attactive maybe, not conventionally but I'll do :) But there was always that niggling little feeling that never left.

It's been like this: I hate my candid shots so much they gave me sleepless nights. I never ever turn to my side profile for a posed photograph. I request people to delete pics I'm tagged in that my side profile is showing. After some incidents and as work as an actor started to become a real thing, and a few rejected auditions later, I started researching surgeons in my hometown Hyderabad.

Convincing my husband was tricky, but once he realized why and how much I wanted it, he was on board. I saved up some money, called a whole bunch of sugeons here and after asking some details, looking online at their pics, videos and other details, zeroed in on a few. The first consultation was at this heavily advertized clinic called Akriti, but I checked out the surgeon and his credentials seemed good. However, I didn't like his demeanor (very serious, almost to the point of being rude) and more importantly I didn't like his work when he showed me pics. They didn't have finesse and he admitted he worked on only two other noses as mine. And the pic of one of those noses, the man still had a bit of the hump!! When my husband pointed that out, he said "You have good observational skills" and smiled. Odd.

The second doctor I went to was Dr Venkat Thota. Now, he and his wife run a small but nice little clinic. There's no show, there's no pomp. He's a serious surgeon, "passionate" about plastics. His face lights up when he starts describing procedures he has done, in detail. He had a sense of humor, understood what I wanted and worked on noses similar to mine and those pics were outstanding! I was thrilled. He said he'd do an open procedure, small incision at the base, general anesthesia, one day stay at the clinic, 5 days with the cast and then removal. He said he'd give antibiotics and other medication that I had to take for a week or so. He also said he'd remove the hump clean, no need for tip work.

Now the Akriti clinic doc said I'd need tip work and that my tip was very droopy (my husband disagreed and so did I but I was confused then). Although I had already decided on Dr Venkat, I decided to look at one other doctor. I went to Dr YV Rao, heavily advertized again, in a posh colony in the city, where I used to live earlier. Anyway, I didn't like him at all and he made me very uncomfortable. Dr Venkat answered my questions every single time, even today when I went to get one suture (last one) removed. Dr Rao said when I asked him questions "Having too much info is not good." That, along with his refused to show pics of his work, and refusal to show morphed images of my after pic to get an idea (both the other doctors gave before-after edits without hesitation) made me realize how lucky I was to find Dr Thota. Also, Dr Rao kept saying in his videos about how patient dissatisfaction is high in rhinoplasties. And he wanted to do a closed procedure ("open procedures are for less skilled surgeons" - a claim that realself doctors unanimously disagree with and I trust them), local anesthesia ("people sometimes don't wake up from general anesthesia") (!!!), no sedation so I'd be awake during the procedure and he'd take out the cast in a "few days" and I could go back to work in a week. He was vague about the tip. Instead he said he'd remove cartilage from the ear and put it to the left side where there was a slight depression. I pointed out that the depression was temporary, because I was wearing glasses that morning at home as I always do. Whew. So much for professional observation.

So yeah, I stuck to Dr Thota. We finally agreed on slight tip work ("like Shruti Hassan [bollywood actress who used to have a prominent dorsal hump], make it slightly more refined" and I was soldddd) I went to the clinic at 11, was told to take a glass of milk and a tablet in the morning and after that to avoid even water. The previous night also he gave me 3 tablets to take, I forget the names. I trusted his judgement and did as I was told. The surgery was around 3 and I they woke me up soon after it was over because of the cotton/padding in the nose. According to my husband, they shouted my name and asked me to wake up and breathe from my mouth at least 50 times before I finally woke up. He was worried, poor thing. After they shifted my to the room, I was groggy, the cast and padding made things uncomfortable, the IV hurt but there was no other pain. I had earlier told my doctor I was very scared of throwing up so for some reason, he said I couldn't eat or drink till the next morning. That night was the worse only because my mouth was so dry. I drink water all day and wake up to drink some in the night so it was all I could think of. I finally got them to give me a few drops of water so my mouth was wet. I kept my poor husband awake the entire night begging for drops of water. The nurse had earlier poured a little into my throat and I choked. Ughh. But my husband looked after me like Florence Nightingale. Hehe.

The next morning, he came at around 8, took out the padding. It didn't hurt, it just felt weird for a second. Then it was over. I drank water, changed, went home. I slept till noon, then ate some rice and soup (staple here). Then I slept again. I drank some tea in the evening, and ate rice and soup in the night too. It was uncomfortable sleeping on my back all night and I was too scared to turn to my sides and the cast felt pretty heavy. My cast and tape covered even my forehead.

The next 3 days went slowly but surely and Sat came already! I had a hard time wetting the tape and removing the tape. He didn't tell me to shower or wet the tape so I didn't. Then the removing of the cast and the sutures didn't hurt either. I just had adhesive marks on my face which I cleaned with baby oil once I got home. There was one suture left, he tried to remove it but it hurt and he said there was a scab so he asked me to come back. I went back today and it was over in a second.

I had been cleaning my nose with a q-tip, removing dried blood the first few days. Then the nasal drops helped clear my nose and I would cough up phlegm and blood for a few days (gross, sorry). I still have 2-3 absorbable sutures inside, he said they'd take a few weeks. I'm still using t-bact around the nostrils and the nasal drops. I had a bad stomach last few days, due to the antibiotics I suppose so I stopped them. He also said that's okay but asked me to take one tablet in the night to stop sneezing (have to check name).

Basically, I had a satisfactory experience because I went with a good doctor. I did my research, called and got details for many, then had 3 consultations, one after I decided on my doctor. Then I went back for more questions, cost, got the blood work and set a date I knew he'd be around the entire week in case I needed him. The only unexpected part was where they didn't let me drink even some water till the next morning after surgery. The swelling at 8 days after cast removal is almost gone expect for the tip, which I know will take time. Everyday it refines a little. I had a few tense moments where I felt and still feel little bumps and lumps along the new nasal bone but realself assured me it's normal and so did my doctor. He said if you can't see it and only feel it, it's okay. Heh. Guess I can live with that. Also, the bump that I felt yesterday is no longer there and today there's a new side where I feel hard swelling but I iced it and it's gone. So it's still work in progress and to be honest, I love it already. So actually that's my fear, that it will change or even the hump will come back! My husband thinks that's funny and so did the doctor. My mother looked after me the entire 10 days, not letting me do any work, and I could rest and recuperate and just be. Thanks, mom :) And my husband, I already told you, without his support, nothing. I'm already feeling like a different person. I am no longer thinking about a person looking at my profile. I might even do a few kissy lips-duck poses now! I could get bangs. Oh and yesterday and today I wore stylish little pony tails and my nose pulls off anything, I tell you. I smile and there's no droopiness. The last thing I asked before the anesthesia is "Will my nose be upturned" and he said no. He said "once you wake up, breathe through your mouth. It'll be uncomfortable for a day" and I said "but my nose will be straight right?" and he laughed.

The difference is so significant to me - already things have changed for me. How I wear my hair, how I approach people, whether I think about which angle is visible to a person...is this how other people have always lived, the buggers? Never having to worry about the profile and taking selfie after selfie. Lol. It's a new lifestyle waiting for me out there.

But seriously, I would recommend it for anyone who's had this issue all their lives. But research your doctor and visit at least 3-4 around your area. Don't be lured in my ads. Talk to your chosen doctor at least 3 times before surgery even if it's on mail or skype. Spend on consultations, make an informed decision. This can change your life so don't take it easy. I made the mistake of taking my braces off a few months too soon so this time I listened to my doctor's instructions to a T.

This is all just sinking in for me. I'm still scared it will change or something will happen and worry about the bumps. But overall, it was a good experience. Minimal pain, slight discomfort, fast recovery. I still can't believe it's over. And I find it so funny that not one person noticed. I went to a wedding the other day and my old friends were there and no one knew :) I suppose the change is tremendous mostly for me. But it's I that matters, right? I'm glad I got it done.

Apologies for the super long post. I will update and post pics later.

Pics

Almost been a month...

So it's been a month. It's been full of mixed feelings. The surgery itself and the week following it wasn't so bad. No pain, really, just discomfort. I switched off my brain and tried not to overthink it since I made a decision and I was in. Cast removal day was good, despite the swelling. The next one week, everytime I looked in the mirror it was a pleasant surprise.

The last two weeks, however, have not been great. One, I've had stomach distress because of all the antibiotics. So for 5 days I had terrible diahrrea (gross I know) and then took meds for that and ended up with constipation. I read here to be prepared for that, but to be honest, I really wasn't. The other thing is as the bone seems to stop being tender and the swelling is subsiding, I notice a little bump on my left side that's not really a hump - you can't see it but you can feel it's slightly...bumpy on that side if I run my finger over it. The doc's response was "If you can't see it, it's fine" which is true I guess but that hasn't stopped me from obsessing and worrying about it. Let's see where it goes. Also, my nose broke out - I don't break out a lot, maybe a zit once a month or so, a little roughness on my forehead, but not much else so I'm not sure how to deal. Especially since it's the nose and I couldn't scrub or clean (still scared to clean properly plus tip feels very numb) it's shiny and uneven. The acne on my nose made me freak out so much I was down for a few days. It's still there, but now I'm braver cleaning it and hoping it will go away soon.

The scar tissue where the incision was made has not healed yet but of course no one but me will actually see it. By the way, none of my family members have noticed. I'm meeting some cousins over the weeked and my close friends next week, so I'm curious to see if anyone sees the change.
Dr Venkat Thota

5 out of 5 stars Overall rating
5 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
5 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
4 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
5 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
5 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
4 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
4 out of 5 stars Payment process
4 out of 5 stars Wait times
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