Rhinoplasty: StoriesWrite a Review
Rhinoplasty Part 1: Just Got My Cast Off - Vancouver, BC
- posted 6 months ago
- updated 3 months ago
- Worth It
- Cost: $7,200
- Thomas Buonassisi, MD (Vancouver, BC)
I apologize in advance for the length of this post...
- 22 Nov 2012
- 3 months pre
I apologize in advance for the length of this post - i have a few month's worth of stuff to talk about (lol). please bear with me...
I already have an account on realself that I am using for another kind of review, and I made the mistake of putting up photos there without editing out parts of my face or tattoos I have. Then I realized that I can't delete them (as far as I know). So I made this new account so I can document my experience with rhinoplasty and upload photos with my eyes and tattoos covered - I'm not ashamed of what I'm going to get done, but I only want the few people I've already told to know. The rest, if I can get away with not having to say anything, I'll be happy with that. Chances are, I'll eventually close this account after all is said and done, as this seems to be the only way to delete reviews, lol. I just want a place to document my experience and get support and have potential questions answered, and as well, maybe help out others who have similar questions or thoughts. I've found this website very helpful in making my decisions regarding surgeries, and so I figure maybe my review can help at least 1 person. But once I'm all healed up from the surgery, I'd rather delete it altogether. I don't like the idea of all my photos and stuff being accessible to everyone, forever - it freaks me out, haha.
My story pretty much begins the same as everyone else's.. I had a decently cute nose up until I was about 8, and then certain things started to become more noticeable, such as a small bump in my bridge and a crooked nasal bone (mostly noticeable on the right side of my nose). I wish I could blame this on breaking my nose or something, but alas, that's never happened. My mom has a nice nose, and the fact is, I just inherited my dad's nose. Everyone in my dad's side of the family has a nose with "character", let's just put it that way. My dad's nose suits HIS face, but that's also because he's a man, lol. I'm proud to look like a pretty equal combination of both my parents, except for my nose - it's not feminine at all.
My main problems with my nose are: it's too long, the tip is too big and droops a LOT (especially when I smile or talk), the small bump on my bridge, and the unevenness. I do have a misaligned jaw, and so my nose (like my mouth) tends to (very slightly) sway more to the right side of my face. My nostrils are also uneven, and this is most noticeable if you look at my right profile. Currently, it feels like my nose on my right side of my face literally is taking over my face, whereas my nose is little more gracious when looking at my left profile. I would still want to change it even if both sides looked like my left, but at least I'd be less self-conscious overall of my current nose.
I'd already broached the topic of plastic surgery with my mom and dad this past summer because I made the decision to get a breast augmentation next year. Nothing big; I'm barely over 5 feet and don't weigh much, so I know that anything larger than a small C cup would look silly on my frame. Overall, I love who I am and I'd say I'm about 85% comfortable in my own skin. The only things about me that I never really liked were my small breasts (I have a bit of a muscular body so they never seemed to fit my frame, and as I'm a small person, they make me feel sometimes like I have the body of a 13-year-old, despite being in my early twenties), my nose, my crooked teeth, and my butt. My teeth I am currently straightening out with braces, and I believe in exercising to improve your health and figure, so I know things like my butt and thighs are fixable by my own doing, I just need to maintain the self-discipline. But the fact is, my breasts and nose can't be improved by any other means than plastic surgery. I personally believe that, so long as you do it for the right reasons and aren't endangering your health, plastic surgery is just as acceptable as doing OTHER things to change parts of your body, such as braces, or makeup, or dying your hair. Plastic surgery just has a negative connotation attached to it, which is why it's criticized by lots of people. It's very unfortunate. That's also part of the reason why I'm discussing these things here, but will delete my review once I'm all healed up and ready to stop talking about it; I'm doing this for my own reasons, but I don't exactly want people I know to stumble across this, recognize me, and then give me lectures, lol. Hopefully people here understand where I'm coming from..
Anyways, when I finally made the decision (after years of thinking about it) that I'd get a breast augmentation when I turn 22 next year, I told my fiance, my mom, and my dad. My fiance kept telling me that he loves me the way I am now, but he understands that if this is what I feel I need to do, he'll support me. He hasn't judged me at all about it. I was nervous to tell my mom, since she's the closest person in my life and who I tell absolutely everything to. I also care WAY too much about her opinion. She was a little surprised, since I'd never mentioned this topic to her before, and at first she was skeptical. But after I showed her all the research I'd been doing and would continue to do (I'm not the kind of person who does things half-assed; I do my homework to a tedious extent), she slowly came to my side and was supportive. The one thing she told me though was that she didn't want me turning into one of those girls who gets hooked on plastic surgery and suddenly I don't look like the same person anymore. Because I know this won't be the case, I assured her that wouldn't happen. Telling my dad was even easier, because he just laughed and told me it's my body and whatever I do to it is my choice and he just wants me to be happy.
The thing was, once I told them the truth about my decision to want to get that, rhinoplasty was soon to follow in my head. Just as long as I'd wished I had slightly bigger boobs, I'd likewise wished I had a smaller, more feminine nose. But since I just told my parents about the breast augmentation, I felt I'd be pushing my luck if I opened up to them about wanting to fix my nose as well. Especially since my mom has expressed her concern that I'd become "hooked". The truth was, these were the only two surgeries I ever cared to get; I'm more than happy with everything else on my body, and I really don't want any other plastic surgery. But I worried that, because I was only discussing it NOW, despite thinking about it for years, it might appear to her to be a sporadic decision, and perhaps "proof" that I was already getting ahead of myself. I spent about 3 months doing research on rhinoplasty, reading reviews, looking at pictures, and researching surgeons in Vancouver. The only person who knew was my fiance. When I first told him, he didn't quite understand why I wanted to get it fixed. Well, I mean, he DID, but he personally doesn't see the flaws that I see in it. Ahh, the perks of having a wonderful man who literally loves everything about you, lol. However, same as the other situation, he just hugged me and told me that he'll support my decision because he knows it'll make me happier and more confident, and I'm doing it for ME and for no one else. What I like is that he's GENUINELY supportive; he doesn't begrudgingly support me but is critical about it. I am very lucky to have him.
I wound up feeling compelled to tell one of my bridesmaids over the phone, because I'd booked a consultation with Dr. Denton and I was feeling morally guilty about keeping this information from my mom, as we tell each other everything. Like my fiance, she didn't think rhinoplasty was necessary, but she was kind about it. She DID think I should tell my mom though, and so, nervous and shaking on the phone, I told her. I explained everything to her - how much research I was doing, that I was booking consultations with two surgeons (the one with Dr. Denton and another one with Dr. Bounassisi in late December), and that I understand why this might worry her but that I wasn't going to have anymore plastic surgery after these two operations, because these are the only two I want. To my surprise, she told me that she already expected I'd tell her I wanted to get rhinoplasty, because apparently I've told her several times throughout my life that I disliked my nose and wanted it fixed. She told me that she was less surprised by this than when I told her of the breast augmentation. LOL, go figure! So she's completely on board and fine by it all, because she trusts me and my judgement. She knows if I don't feel 100% safe, I won't go through with it. I haven't told my dad, though, or any of my other close friends. I would like to imagine that perhaps none of them will notice, and then I can get away without having to tell them.
I had my consultation with Dr. Denton on Monday, November 5th, and was very impressed. I went in with about 40 typed up questions, a list of my likes and dislikes in nose jobs I've seen, pre-existing conditions of mine he should know about (like my misaligned jaw), my own expectations, and pictures. I'd heard from a couple reviews that the odd person felt rushed by him, as though he didn't have time for all of their questions. This certainly was not the case with my experience; he patiently answered all of my questions and even let me refer to him jokingly as "Doc". I pretty much covered any question you can and should ask at a consultation; if anyone is interested in what Dr. Denton's answers were (everything from pre-op questions, to surgery questions, to post-op care questions), just message me and I can message you all the questions and his answers. He felt my nose a bit and agreed with my observations. He also told me that I have thicker skin, so that'll be in my favour for the surgery. He told me that the nature of my concerns was pretty mild, and so more than likely he won't resort to open rhinoplasty, but closed, which I like because then I won't have any visible scars. He also told me that he uses Twilight anesthesia, as it results in the lowest chances of nausea post-surgery. The idea kind of freaks me out; can anyone who's undergone Twilight anesthesia tell me a bit of what it was like, to ease my fears? Lol :P
I told him that what I would like done to my nose is: shorten the length, reduce the size of the tip a bit, get rid of the bump, even out my bridge, upturn the tip a bit, and give the bridge a slight curve. I told him what I DON'T like is too pointy a tip (I still want a bit of roundness), piggy snouts, and too much of a curve. He assured me that my desires are achievable with my nose and shouldn't be difficult to produce.
Then came the digital imaging. I have to admit, I was the most excited for this. I really didn't like seeing my nose blown up on his computer screen, lol. He edited the front of my nose first, and at first, I wasn't sure whether I liked it or not. He mentioned that, due to the contrast and it being a flat image, it's difficult to fully see, but rest-assured, my tip would still be round and not pointy, which was nice to hear. Then he edited the right side, profile, and I have to admit, I was kind of horrified at first. Though he was doing exactly what I wanted with it, my initial thought was, "THAT'S NOT WHAT I HAD IN MIND AT ALL!" I instantly wondered if I was making a mistake. But the longer I looked at it, the more I noticed how much more it fit my face, softened my features, and gave me a more feminine look. The more I looked at it, the more I was starting to love it. All of a sudden, it dawned on me: it's not that I didn't like the new nose; it's that I've been so used to looking at MY nose for the last 21 years. Whether or not I like it, it's what I've been accustomed to. So seeing myself with a different nose was startling and foreign, which I misinterpreted as dislike. But I'm actually in love with the digital imaging of my nose. When he edited the left side, it solidified these feelings. By that point, I was sold, and knew in my heart that I was going to do this. Also, it was nice to see the very real possibility of no longer having a "bad" side; though aspects of my nose would still be (slightly) uneven, that would make it look more natural. The important thing was that, though both sides will obviously look a bit different, both sides look wonderful in their own way. I like the idea of not having a self-conscious angle or side anymore. I also liked how Dr. Denton was honest about there still being small aspects where my nose would be uneven - I respected his honesty, and more so the fact that he referred to these imperfections as "what makes us human", as opposed to lying to me and promising me things he couldn't achieve.
With the taxes and the cost of the anesthetic and surgical fees, my cost would be around $6800. I knew it'd most likely be around that much, but it still took me by surprise and slightly disappointed me, only because I hate the idea of spending that much money, lol. I feel pretty confident that I want to go with Dr. Denton, but I still want to have my consultation with Dr. Bounassisi in December. His receptionist was a little more helpful over the phone, and apparently one perk is that Dr. B has a larger number of employees, so you get more post-op care. A downside is that Dr. B is more expensive, so I'll wait to see what quote THEY give me.
I'm getting married next August, and I want to have my breast augmentation in the fall, so I've decided that, no matter what, I'll get the rhinoplasty in April of this coming year, as soon as I'm done the exams for my final semester of University. It'll be my graduation present to myself. The nice thing about that is that my mom won't be coming into town until mid-June for my graduation ceremony, and it takes approximately 6 weeks for your nose to be considered "healed" (to the extent that you can touch it like you would've your old nose, without the worry of pain or hindering the healing process). So I'll be in the clear by the time she arrives, so she doesn't have to see my nose look all wonky. Another perk is that it'd be healed for about 3.5 to 4 months by the time my wedding arrived, so it would look more or less more natural by then, and then others won't suspect anything (hopefully).
Okay, that's my story up until this point. Sorry it took so many words to say it, lol. I appreciate being able to record my journey here, with so many understanding and supportive people going through the same things. I will update after I have my consultation with Dr. Bounassisi next month. Have a happy holiday!
I had my consultation with Dr. Thomas Buonassisi...
- 29 Dec 2012
- 2 months pre
Then he started morphing my photos with the software, and I'm not going to lie, that was kind of frustrating at first. It actually seemed frustrating not only to me, but to the Doc as well. We had a difficult time understanding what the other was trying to say for the first little bit - he didn't understand why I was being so picky about what he was doing to the images, whereas I didn't understand why he didn't seem to get where my anxiety was coming from. But that wasn't really the case; it was just a huge miscommunication. The turning point was when he was explaining to me HIS approach to rhinoplasty, which sounded slightly more conservative than Dr. Denton's, but not in a negative way. I finally stopped and asked him point blank to edit the photos the way that HE thinks would look good on me, and I really did like what he showed me. The changes he has in mind would be minor (since he thinks my nose isn't that bad to begin with), but when they all come together, it still produces the same effect I originally wanted: a more feminine nose with a more upturned tip and smaller bridge, while still looking natural. He and I were finally on the same page, and once we both understood each other, the rest of the consultation was a lot more fluent.
I have to be very clear on this: I am not IN ANY WAY saying that Dr. B is "better" than Dr. Denton. I personally really liked "the Doc" (as I called Dr. Denton when I met him); he was very personable, professional, and took the time to answer all of my questions. And his secretary is adorable (she even sent me a little letter recently, thanking me for seeing them and reminding me that I can contact her any time I have questions). So again, I'm not insinuating that one surgeon is better than the other. I would've been just as happy going with Dr. Denton - however, there were several clinching factors that made me decide on Dr. B:
(1) the consultation took about 3 times as long as it did with Dr. Denton. Although the Doc took the time to answer all my questions patiently, he did have to get going after about 20-30 minutes. I was Dr. B's last patient of the day, and even when I worried that I might be annoying him a little bit, he patiently sat with me for about an hour and a half, discussing every possible thing to do with the surgery and my personal thoughts and questions.
(2) Dr. B was willing to show me photos of rhinoplasty procedures that had "errors". When I say "willing", I mean that he came forward on his own and told me he wanted to show me these things. He went through before and after pictures of several past patients whose noses (in my and his opinion) looked fantastic, but that there did exist some (very) small problems (such as unexpected bumps in the bridge that came on by swelling during post-op; or visibility of where the bones broke due to the patient having thin skin, etc.). He showed me these photos to point out that although it's like 95% the case that my nose will turn out either exactly what I was hoping for or better, there was still the chance for small errors like this to occur, since no surgery is perfect. This honesty REALLY impressed me.
(3) He has an eye for this sort of thing. The way he's able to view all of the individual aspects of what needs to be changed on the nose in relation to the OTHER parts that need to be changed - along with the overall facial features of the patient - is very impressive.
(4) You can tell he puts the well-being and best interest of the patient first.
(5) Although we started off on strange terms, by the end of the consultation, I felt completely comfortable with him - but more importantly, I felt safe in putting my trust in him. So much so, that the idea of going with any other surgeon just didn't feel RIGHT anymore.
That was the deciding factor. Weirdly, I felt momentarily bad for realizing that I wasn't going to go with Dr. Denton (as if my choice would hurt his feelings or something, lmao). But ultimately, it had nothing to do with one necessarily being better than the other; it had everything to do with the simple fact that my gut told me that I only fully trusted Dr. B to perform this surgery for me. But for the record, Dr. Denton is just as wonderful of a surgeon and I'd recommend him to anyone, too.
After the consultation, he retook the photos of me for his records (since the original ones were blurry), and then my fiance and I sat back down with Mandy for another half hour and went over what the costs would be, etc. It was there that I made the decision to go ahead with Dr. B and take the leap and set the date. So I paid the initial fee and my surgery is officially booked for Tuesday, February 26. I don't look forward to paying the $1500 soon, once everything they need is filled out and sent back to them from my end, nor am I excited to pay the REMAINDER of the amount - but c'est la vie! Other than that, I'm not worried at the moment about the actual surgery. I'm really just excited, though I'm sure I'll grow nervous when the time actually comes.
Another thing about the cost: I was originally thinking that the only thing that would deter me from going with Dr. B would be the cost, which I was warned was going to be higher than I was quoted with Dr. Denton. But in reality, it was really only about $300 more, which to me, isn't enough of a price difference to let it determine my decision. Okay, back to the general info about my surgery: unlike Dr. Denton, who said he'd perform a closed rhinoplasty on me, Dr. B will perform an open surgery. He says he'll do this because it will give a more precise surgery, with better results, and will ensure that my tip will heal properly, and not risk collapsing back down into its natural droop. I'm okay with this; the only thing that worries me is when I'd have to have the stitches removed, as I've never had this done before and I've heard it hurts. :S I'm a wuss when it comes to anticipating pain - I always imagine it'll be worse than it actually is. Also, as Dr. Denton said he'd do, Dr. B will put me under Twilight Anesthesia. I thought I'd never been under it before, but when I described the kind of anesthesia I was put under when I had my wisdom teeth removed, he told me that that is what Twilight Anesthesia is. So apparently I've had it before! I just remember nothing about the experience, haha. Hopefully this experience is just as easy.
Anyways, the only thing I'm still waiting on is the images he altered on the software. Once I'm emailed those (I'm going to try and get them next week if they don't send them to me first), I'll upload them here.
Also, how do you add the doctor to the review? I...
- 29 Dec 2012
- 2 months pre
I've edited and added the images that Dr....
- 31 Dec 2012
- 2 months pre
P.S. Again, how do I add Dr. Buonassisi to my review, where his picture shows up and stuff? It only lets me type in his name but then that's all that shows up. Is this option only available once I've gone through with the procedure?
So my surgery got moved up to a week earlier (from...
- 7 Jan 2013
- 1 month pre
The past couple days, I've been kind of emotionally back and forth. One second I'm feeling completely confident and optimistic about the surgery, and the next I'm freaking out. My main concern is that, I really only think that my appearance will be different predominantly from the front (like, when people look at my dead on). My mom, fiance, and Doc all agree that the changes - overall - will be subtle and people shouldn't notice I got work done (which is what I wanted), but in order to upturn my tip, my nostrils will show more from the front, obviously. This is the only thing that freaks me out because I'm afraid it won't suite my face at all. I'm just scared I won't like it from the front angle - but I keep being told not to worry; that I'll look great, so it really just depends on what mood you catch me in. Lol.
It also doesn't help that my conscience got the better of me and I wound up telling my dad last night. My dad and I have always had more of a "buddy-buddy" relationship, although everyone (including him) knows that it's my mom and I that have the strongest bond. So he gets jealous easily when/if he finds something out and realizes that 1) not only didn't I tell him, but 2) my mom already knew about it. So I played it off as though I was telling him first, and would be telling my mom right afterwards (though she's known for a few months). Anyways, though we wasn't negative about it, his response less than thrilled me. I was really surprised, because months and months ago when I told him I was considering a breast augmentation next year, he laughed at how nervous I was to tell him and told me he didn't care, that it's my body, and he doesn't care what I do with it as long as I'm safe and happy. For the record, in the recent month +, my gut has been telling me that I really don't want to go through with a BA (for a variety of reasons). So I began by explaining that to him and telling him of my decision to get Rhinoplasty, my reasons why, and how this has been something I've wanted since I was a kid. He told me he understands why I currently have braces (Invisalign) and want to straighten my teeth, but he doesn't really get my desire to fix my nose. He told me he loves me just the way I am, thinks I'm beautiful, and though that won't change, he kept telling me that everyone has things about them that they don't like, but they LIVE with them. He also kept telling me he thinks my nose is fine the way it is. He asked me (rather scornfully) what my fiance thinks of my decision, and when I said he was 100% supportive, he didn't sound like he believed me. And he also said that my mom wouldn't be impressed (little did he knows mom already knew and was also fully supportive). The whole thing was really discouraging. The way he kept on repeating the fact that everyone else just lives with their flaws made me feel like he was judging my decision; it made me feel really superficial all of a sudden for wanting to get this done.
Later that evening, he called me back and I was hopeful that he was calling to tell me that he had thought about it and wanted to give me more of his support. Instead, he called to tell me that he had been looking at a bunch of my pictures and that he thinks my nose is beautiful and I'm fine just the way I am. I awkwardly said thanks, and asked him what he was hoping to achieve by telling me this. He admitted that he hoped it would make me reconsider, and to me, that was kind of offensive. I told him that mom was 100% supportive and understood why I'm getting it done, and he implied that my mom is just lying to me to make me feel better, but really, she isn't supportive (which isn't true AT ALL, cause my dad and mom have been divorced for like 15 years, barely speak, and he certainly doesn't know how she is or what she thinks). He could tell I was pretty annoyed with the phone call though, so he did that thing people do where they act overly jolly and laugh a lot, as if trying to back pedal. Anyways, that night at like 1am, I started crying and talked to my fiance about the whole thing. My dad's reaction was playing off of the (albeit common) fears I already have, and was making me really emotional. At my fiance's suggestion, I made a late night phone call to my mom, who made me feel heaps better.
She's definitely a positive force to have in my corner. She's been great about this whole thing, and so supportive. The day I got the photos back from Dr. B's office, I sent them to her and she kept telling me how beautiful she thinks the "after" photos look, and how amazing she knows I'll look afterwards. Hearing her say all that made me feel so much better and loads more confident. Anyways, today I'm on the positive side of things; I woke up feeling much better about all this, and feeling like, I'm going to come out of this okay. I trust my surgeon. My dad wound up calling this evening, and after asking how my day went, he asked me, "How's your nose?" and started laughing. I awkwardly laughed and replied that it hadn't fallen off yet. He told me again that he looked at more of my photos and he thinks I'm beautiful and can't understand what I see wrong in my nose. So I told him that maybe part of the problem is that he thinks I'm planning to change it much more drastically than I actually plan to. I told him my mom had seen my photos and she thinks they're beautiful and that the changes are subtle but will look great on me. Sure enough, he said, "You showed your mother? Why didn't you show me? I want to see them too!" So I lied and said that the only reason she saw them was that today she ASKED me, and that I WAS going to ask him if he wanted to see them. He replied, "Of course I do!" So hopefully after he actually sees the before and after photos he'll be more on board, or at least more positive about it. I just hope he won't see them and not like them. I feel bad for complaining about his reaction, seeing as how there are lot of people on here who tell their parents and get ZERO support...
Anyways, this means that my surgery is little over a month away. Yay!
Really sick today; third time in a month, which is...
- 10 Jan 2013
- 1 month pre
Surgery is in 28 days, and the count is now on....
- 22 Jan 2013
- 1 month pre
The remaining balance is due in 3 days, and that's the only part I'm really dreading. $6600... it's going to be such a bummer; I'm going to be so broke afterwards, haha. But my fiance reminded me that we can always make more money. He's been so wonderful and supportive, especially lately. When I was filling out the forms the other night, it was very stressful and I was kind of agitated easily. Then we went to lunch the next day and it suddenly hit me that in a month from now, I'm going to have a new nose. I touched my nose now and just kind of sat there, shocked. I started panicking and talking a million words a second, about my feelings - excitement and fear and nervousness and happiness, etc. He calmed me down, said all of the right things ("It's going to look amazing," and the like). Then he told me he was proud of me, for deciding something like this and sticking to it and doing it for me; not changing my mind to please other people. This meant a lot to me, and is what I needed to hear.
I'm still back and forth right now. I'm just nervous. I know this is what I want and I know I want to go through with it. I just keep worrying about it turning out badly.. especially with the fact that I like my frontal view (for the most part) and I envision that this is what will look the most different afterwards. It's just that, it took so long for me to grow to love myself and find myself beautiful. I'm scared that - at least for the first while after the procedure - I'll think I completely messed myself up and looked better before. Ugh.
In a down mood today; thinking of closing my...
- 24 Jan 2013
- 26 days pre
To the few people who have responded, thanks. You guys were the only ones who made me feel like my story had any relevance around here. Lately, though, it just hasn't felt that way. Like I said, I feel like I've been talking to myself (or 1 or 2 other people) most of the time, and it's becoming more negative for me than positive because I check this site every day to see if anyone has commented or spoken to me, and it's always no. Lol. So rather than be a downer on everyone, I'll just delete it.
Good luck with your surgeries everyone! Just know I'll still be reading them and smiling :) I'm very happy for you all.
Sorry to be so melodramatic earlier... everyone...
- 24 Jan 2013
- 26 days pre
Got the dreaded blood work today, which was the...
- 31 Jan 2013
- 19 days pre
Anyways, the best part was, before we went to the lab, my fiance saw how anxious I was and I kept repeating, "I HATE needles, I HATE needles," and then he was like, "Do you want some ice cream after the needle?" And I was mid pout and then went, "....Okay." So after I saw through the blood work, he took me for ice cream. HAH. I am such a loser. On the bright side, my fiance rocks. :P
I also re-added (again) my before and (simulated)...
- 31 Jan 2013
- 19 days pre
UGH I still can't figure out why this stupid thing...
- 3 Feb 2013
- 16 days pre
I tried to make a video, but my webcam sucks and...
- 14 Feb 2013
- 5 days pre
I figured I'd list all of the things I gathered in preparation for the surgery and post-op. A big thank you to BiancaMichelle's review, which helped me a lot in giving me some suggestions...
-My prescriptions (antibiotics, painkillers, and gravol)
-Traumeel (homeopathic combination of Arnica and Bromelain that I take 3 times a day for a week up to the surgery and then for a week or so afterwards)
-Arnica cream (haven't picked it up yet, but I will, to apply around my eyes after surgery)
-A hat, since I can't wear shades for at least 2 months and my eyes are very sensitive to sunlight
-A u-shaped pillow
-Natural fiber tablets, in case I need them (and I'd prefer to try those to laxatives)
-Paper tape (for the gauze pads)
-Different flavourings for water (Crystal Lite, etc.)
-Hand-held floss picks
-A new toothbrush with a small head
-A cool-air humidifier
-Two packs of gatorade
-Lots and LOTS of Q-tips
-Saline nasal mist
-Ensure drinks (I recommend the butter pecan, they taste delicious)
-Boost drinks (the chocolate, vanilla, and mocha are all very tasty too
-Gel packs (for icing)
-Recliner (but that's just cause I already own one lol)
I think that's it.. If I forgot anything, I'll add it to the list when I remember, haha.
Waiting in the surgical centre; surgery's in 45...
- 19 Feb 2013
- On day of treatment
Hi everyone! First of all, thanks to everyone who...
- 19 Feb 2013
- On day of treatment
I was the first patient this morning, so we arrived at the surgical centre (which was gorgeous, by the way) around 7am, and I was scheduled for surgery at 8am. We waited for a bit, and then a nurse there went over a few documents with me and asked me a few questions. Then I changed into my gown, house coat, and bag slipper things lol Then I got my IV (with just salt water at the time), and I was shaking a bit before that because I was scared of the needle. It stung and was uncomfortable but the woman who administered it, Bonnie, was probably the SWEETEST woman ever, so she made it bearable. Then I sat in a chair with my IV drip and a blanket until Dr. B arrived. He sat down and asked me if I had any last questions - which I did - so we talked about those, looked over the images one last time, and then he left the room. Shortly afterwards, the nurses came in to get me, so I kissed my fiance and I went into the surgical room.
Now. I don't want to discourage anyone who hasn't had rhinoplasty yet, and I'm sure whoever reads this who is going to have Twilight sedation will probably freak right out after reading this, but keep in mind this ISN'T my intent, and most people had a much easier experience than I did. So please, just keep that in mind...
So, I lied down and they hooked up my heart monitor and my blood pressure thing. Then Dr. B came in, and they started administering some sort of drug, which was supposed to make me relaxed and drowsy, and though I felt a tiny bit out of it, I certainly was completely aware of what was going on. Then Dr. B said he was going to start administering the local anesthetic and I started to panic because I could feel everything still and didn't feel that out of it. I got 3 needles across my upper gums and then a number of needles in my nose and the surrounding area. They were very unpleasant and kind of painful, and I started shaking really badly - I think the whole thing was just getting overwhelming for me and I was terrified that I was going to feel the whole operation, because I assumed I'd react to the IV sedation the same I had the only other time I had it (where I'd fallen asleep). So, to have realized I would be completely present during the procedure freaked me out. But then Dr. B started and I didn't feel anything, obviously. Then I started to relax and just chatted off and on with the surgical team. Bonnie held my hand the entire procedure, which meant the world to me and helped me remain calm. She was honestly the best part of that experience. The only other part of the surgery that was unpleasant was when they were breaking my nose, because although I couldn't feel anything, I felt the pressure and the sounds felt like rattling around in my head. But on the OTHER hand, it was neat when I had my eyes open and I could see the skin of my nose pulled back (as gross as I know that sounds).
Anyways, the surgery itself didn't feel like it took all that long (in reality, it took about an hour). He stitched me up, and then took out the packing (which has been in there for the actual surgery). He said my bleeding was minimal so I didn't require any packing or anything of the like. Then he took my camera and took pictures of my nose. Everyone kept complimenting how beautiful it looks and how great it's going to look when it heals, which was very reassuring. Dr. B said that, even as he took the pictures, my nose (and my tip especially) was already getting swollen, so the pictures weren't a completely accurate representation of how it'll look when it's fully healed, because it'll look even BETTER than the pictures. (Well, I saw the pictures, and I uploaded them here, and I love them REGARDLESS.)
Anyways, the nurses transferred me onto another stretcher and I kept trying to clear my throat because I was having difficulty swallowing. I knew I had blood building up in the back of my throat, so they handed me a tissue and I coughed a bit and spat out a small amount of blood. It wasn't that bad, it sounds worse than it was. But for a little while after that, I felt like I couldn't swallow properly, but I think that was a mix of there still being a good amount of blood back there as well as my upper lip being completely numb.
Anyways, one of the nurses stayed with me and told me she was keeping me lying in the stretcher for a half hour before I could get up. I had no nausea (a perk to having been conscious the entire time), but my nose was definitely starting to feel uncomfortable and starting to sting. But it was definitely tolerable - I'd say like 3 or 4 out of 10 on the pain scale. She brought me a mirror so I could see my face and sure enough, I already had some blue bruising under my eyes and swelling starting above my eyes. She also gave me some ginger ale, which was nice.
Brendan came in a half hour later, and then they wheeled me in a wheelchair to his car. He then called my mom (despite knowing I should limit how much I talk today, I spoke to her for a bit because I knew she'd feel better hearing from me), and then he called my dad and left a message on his machine assuring him I'm alright. We drove to the hotel we're staying at tonight and they wound up upgrading our room from a queen size bed to a king at no extra charge, which is AWESOME! Now Brendan can sleep in bed with me and we have plenty of room to put pillows between us so there's no worry of him bumping me in his sleep. I felt bad not being able to help him carry our myriad of things into the room, but he was fine with it and has been waiting on me hand and foot since we've been here - opening things for me because they might cause my blood pressure to rise and helping me change my drip pads, etc. (I've already changed my drip pad once; my god, the nasal drip feels so gross hahaha) Anyways, I am so lucky to have him! Despite my swelling and bruising, he keeps looking at me and saying I'm so beautiful. When I showed him the photos from the surgery, he (genuinely) replied, "Wow!" then turned to me, smiled, and said, "You're going to look SO gorgeous!" I also texted my best friend the photos and she also thinks it's going to look great, so their words have been very reassuring.
Anyways, my freezing of my upper lip started wearing off (I have full sensation in my upper lip which is awesome) and my nose was stinging pretty badly so I ate a fruit cup, some crackers, and some flavoured water and then took my first antibiotic and pain killer. I still haven't had any nausea, and my pain killer doesn't seem to make me tired. This is both good AND bad, since I kind of hoped it would've helped me sleep in this stupid elevated position, since I'm going to have a hard time sleeping like this haha At least, starting tomorrow night, I can sleep in a recliner at home.
My appetite doesn't seem that hindered by any means, and aside from the nasal drip right now, which feels really wet and gross, and the slight tenderness from the bruising around my eyes, I feel fine. (Not fine, in the sense that I'm gonna go out and make the mistake of pushing it and exhausting myself though haha. Just, fine in the sense that I'm spending the whole day doing nothing but watching TV in bed but I'm really thankful that I feel fine like this, as it could definitely be worse.)
Anywho, this was a long update, but I uploaded a bunch of pictures. Let me know what you think of the ones taken right after the surgery. Keep two things in mind, please: 1) the profile shot of my left side makes my nose look much shorter than it really is, because the angle was weird (not completely straight on), and also, remember that as it heals and the swelling goes down, the tip will drop a bit; and 2) my front angle shot is probably the single most UNFLATTERING angle in the history of the world (looking UPWARDS at me instead of completely straight on), and since my tip already had decent swelling by the time he took the photos, my nostrils look a bit uneven, but this doesn't bug me and I'm sure they'll even out a big as the swelling goes down. :)
Night of Post-Op Day 1: Today's been pretty...
- 19 Feb 2013
- On day of treatment
Today's been pretty good! I've spent it lying and/or sitting up in bed at the hotel in Vancouver and watching TV with the fiance. When I was about an hour away from being able to take my painkillers again, my nose started getting pretty irritated and pulsated every time my heart beat. But after I took the painkillers, I felt perfectly fine. I've had moments where I suddenly feel very tired, so I've taken a couple tiny naps. I stopped using the gauze pads a couple hours ago because my nasal drip was very minimal, so I've just lightly dabbed at the outside of my nostrils with a tissue if I felt any dripping. There was a ton of dried blood around my nostrils and I gently worked some off with q-tips but there's still some there that I'm just going to let come off on its own. I might apply some Polysporin ointment to it soon. Other than that, I've iced a few times today (my PS didn't tell me I needed to do it, just to do it if I felt like it), and I've applied Arnica cream twice so far above and below my eyes. I've swelled up a considerable amount already, it's rather funny. I look like an avatar! And my tip is sooooo swollen. So far, my blue bruising under my eyes has turned more yellowish-brown, but I can only imagine how the bruising and swelling with balloon in the next two days. On a positive note, I can still breathe perfectly through both nostrils, I have full feeling in my upper lip, my tip only feels partially numb, and I have a normal appetite :) I am very happy with my decision to do this; I haven't had a negative thought on the experience at all since it happened. I feel wholly positive at the moment. :)
In terms of what I've been eating and drinking, mostly it's been either crackers, pudding, or fruit cups, although for dinner I had some roast beef and aus jus (delicious and SO nice to eat real food lol). To drink, I've been drinking flavoured water and gatorade. I haven't experienced any nausea or the like from my pain meds - they just eliminate my discomfort, simple as that.
I am thankful that, for my first day, this has been such a doable day. I don't know what tomorrow will bring, but I know today could've been much worse, and so I am grateful. Will update tomorrow with more photos, that I'm sure will be hilarious. :P
I slept horribly last night, due to being...
- 20 Feb 2013
- 1 day post
I got woken up around 945 by Bonnie from the surgical centre calling to ask how I was doing; then literally right afterwards, Dr. B called to ask the same thing. It was nice to know they both cared :)
Unfortunately, I also woke up to a very rude text from my roommate who is also supposed to be one of my close friends. She's the kind of person who always asks for favours but rarely returns them or says thank you. She's also the kind of person never to say sorry if she does something wrong. Anyways, I woke up to a very long text from her - nowhere in there did she ask how I was feeling or how the surgery went. Instead she asked if we could go out of our way on our way home to pick up a chinchilla and bring it back with us, since she wants to pick one up from a girl and doesn't want to make the drive herself. The trip was already going to take 5 hours as it was and we didn't want a chinchilla in the car the entire time, so my fiancé handled the situation and told her we were sorry but we couldn't. She got pissy. Then he mentioned that next time, she should ask how I'm doing before asking for a favour; and she replies, "Oh okay. How about you thank me for taking care of your cats for 3 days." Which was utter bullshit because 1) we HAD already thanked her numerous times, 2) she wasn't "taking care" of them, she was literally taking 5 minutes a day to check if they still had food and water, and 3) we live in the same damn house, and she's always upstairs anyways. So my fiancé told her that, as well as pointing out how many favours we've done for them without asking anything in return. Anyways, I couldn't get involved because she was pissing me off so much that my blood pressure was rising. She never replied to him and she still hasn't contacted me to ask me how I'm doing, so I guess that tells me everything I need to know about our friendship.
Anyways, when I was eating something small so I could take my next set of pills, I started feeling nauseous. I think it was due to being so tired. Shortly after we started driving, we pulled over and i threw up. The next hour or so of the car ride was rough and I still felt ill; the corners of my eyes are super swollen and crazy itchy so it wa hard keeping them open, but then every time I closed my eyes and started drifting off to sleep, I'd stop breathing because my body expected me to breathe through my nose and I wasn't getting enough air there lol Eventually I was able to eat some crackers and then I felt better.
When we got home, I over exerted myself a bit helping Brendan unpack, so I laid down in my recliner and a duvet cover and I finally fell asleep and had a small nap. I woke up to my cat sleeping on my lap so he came and kept me company :)
As for how my face and nose is, my face is incredibly swollen, mainly around my eyes. The inner corners are all ballooned and itchy, it's very annoying. My bruising isn't all that bad; it mostly just looks like slightly darker pigmentations of my own skin as opposed to being blue or purple. My skin is also pretty oily which is driving me nuts, and my hair is starting to bug me. I'm the kind of person who washes it on a daily basis or else it feels greasy (even though it isn't). It's an OCD thing. Maybe ill try and get my fiancé to help me wash it tomorrow.
Day 3 Post-Op: I slept much better last night! I...
- 21 Feb 2013
- 2 days post
I slept much better last night! I found that if I rest the u-shaped pillow on my arm and lean my head against it, I sleep much more comfortably, as opposed to having it around my neck. I slept from about midnight until 5am and then woke up because I had to go to the bathroom. I noticed that I could open my eyes a bit wider than the previous evening, and when I checked in the mirror, my eyes were a tad less swollen. It's still pretty swollen but it's also moved down into my cheeks so my face looks a little puffy today. Then I iced and went back to sleep until 9am, iced some more, took some Traumeel, and went back to sleep until noon. When I woke up I felt well-rested but really gross because my hair and face was super greasy. Thank god for my wonderful fiancé; we maneuvered in the kitchen sink and he washed and conditioned my hair, and then I gently washed my face (careful not to get the cast or my nose wet). I felt MUCH more refreshed afterwards, and felt good enough to go out.
We went to the SPCA, since we adopted a second kitten from them a month ago and wanted to give them a picture of her in her new home. We stayed for a tiny bit to play with some of the stray cats, and then I started to feel a bit nauseous and a bit sore. I hadn't taken my antibiotics or pain killers today, so we finished our errands, came home, and I took them. Now I feel much better. I probably over exerted myself this afternoon, so I'm spending the rest of the day relaxing and watching Harry Potter films haha Brendan is making homemade meatballs tonight at my request - mmmm! I still can't open my mouth very wide to chew, so it's good that they're chewy and soft.
My bruising is doing well! Under my eyes it is turning yellow so I think the worst of it is done with. The inner corners of my eyes are still red, as well as a thin line on the too of my eyelids, but other than that, that's it. I've been using the saline mist in my nostrils to try and clean some of the dried blood, and while there's still a good amount of blood in there, it's better than yesterday. Im also using polysporon around my nostrils and on my stitches (on my septum). I keep worrying that they'll get infected or something so I keep asking Brendan a million times a day, "Can you look again? Are you SURE they aren't becoming infected?" He just laughs and keeps saying no, they're fine (he's medically trained so he knows better than I do).
My tip is still very swollen and so my nostrils are still uneven but they look a tiny bit better today. I'm reassured that its the swelling making the uneven because the left nostril is smaller than the right and it's the left side of my tip that's more tender than the right.
I uploaded some new pictures too :) In the last two, my smile looks VERY right and unnatural; it's the most I can do right now, but the important thing is that it shows how my tip no longer droops when I smile :D I was looking in the mirror and smiling at different angles and it doesn't move at all right now, which I'm ok with. I look at the pictures and I know my tip will get smaller as it heals but so far I like what I see :) I also am keeping in mind that of course, I haven't seen the rest of my nose since its covered in the cast, and I'm sure it'll be swollen and shapeless and unattractive when I see it in 4 days, but I'm not too worried about it. Surprisingly, I've been really positive, mentally, since this whole thing happened. Hopefully it'll stay that way.
Anyways, let me know what you think!
End of Day 4 Post-Op: Didn't sleep very well...
- 23 Feb 2013
- 4 days post
Didn't sleep very well during Night #3. Woke up around 7am briefly and didn't feel like eating (I'd have to remove my braces and then thoroughly clean them before putting them back in, and since I switched to my next set of Invisalign trays last night they were still right and sore), and since I have to eat something with my pain meds, I just took one extra strength Tylenol instead and went back to sleep. Well, I woke up a few hours later with my nose hurting slightly, my teeth hurting a LOT (from the braces), and an upset stomach. Tried to eat some crackers and drink some water but wound up vomiting. Moved from the recliner to my bed and wound up napping all afternoon. I was much comfier there so my fiancé insists that I sleep there instead from now on and he'll continue to sleep on the couch for a while. I felt bad but he really is such a sweetheart. When I woke up I still felt iffy, but I was able to eat more food and keep it down. Spent the rest of the day lounging on the couch and watching Glee lol Didnt post pictures today cause there's not a huge difference from yesterday.
My bruises under my eyes are really yellow now; there's still a bit of swelling around my eyes but most of it (minus my nose) is now in my cheeks. Hopefully it goes away soon cause it's that really subtle swelling where you don't look silly per say but you can tell your proportions are off. My tip is still really swollen, obviously, and the skin is super oily and gross. I can only imagine how wonderful the rest of my skin on my nose will be once the cast comes off. I have full feeling in my upper lip but I can't really smile showing my top teeth still, which sucks cause I'm a person who has big toothy smiles ALL the time. I also find that whenever I laugh or raise my eyebrows, I don't feel any pain but the obvious tugging which I force myself to stop, just to make sure I don't pull any stitches. From what I can tell right now I have some feeling in the top of my nose; if I touch it lightly I can feel everything.
Starting to get a little worried about what ill look like on Tuesday when this cast comes off, but forcing myself to remember the table pictures and remembering that all my family and the majority of my best friends are all in Ontario and won't see me for several months anyways, so for the most part, the majority of the people who'll see me in the gross, swollen stages that is the next couple of months won't be in my life by the time school is over with in April lol
Middle of Day 5 Post-Op: Slept in bed last...
- 23 Feb 2013
- 4 days post
Slept in bed last night, so I slept much much better. Still have some swelling in my eyes and cheeks, but it's gradually going down. There's still swelling in my tip and more in the left side than the right, so my nostrils are still uneven BUT they're looking a little better today. My fiancé washed my hair again and then I took a shower and then cleaned my face afterwards, very carefully. For the first time since before the surgery, I blow dried my hair and applied some makeup. I'm also dressing in actual clothes instead of PJs, as I'm about to step out to run a few errands. Then it's home for more Glee and relaxing on the couch! I feel much more like myself today, and even though my nose is still pretty swollen, I love what I see in the pictures I took today! :)
Btw, a big thanks to CollagenJunkie for chatting with me on FB earlier and keeping me feeling positive, it meant a lot! :)
To continue to part 2 of my Rhinoplasty story, please click here.
My Doctor: Thomas Buonassisi, MD
Heard of Dr. B on realself and then researched him on his website and ratemds.com. He has fantastic ratings and reviews, and I found him compassionate, passionate, honest, and professional during my 1.5 hour consultation with him. I felt I could trust him, and although I'm only a few hours out of surgery, I know I made the right choice. He was kind and reassuring during the surgery, and came in to check on me afterwards, before his next patient's procedure. He's fantastic and has a natural talent and eye for this kind of stuff - I'd recommend him to anybody interested in getting rhinoplasty.