The Nose Knows

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Deciding on Surgery

Plastic surgery is never a simple choice. It’s a permanent, life-altering decision. Even the guarantee of great results does not assuage the nervousness that precedes a surgical procedure. This is a perfectly normal reaction. Hearing about experience from a doctor’s perspective can be helpful, but hearing the patient's story can give better insight.

Marisa's Story
Marisa is an eighteen-year-old girl who has just graduated from high school and will attend university in the fall. This past April, she underwent rhinoplasty surgery with Dr. Walker. Beautiful as she was, her nose was an area about which she always felt insecure. She wanted the surgery and recovery to be finished in time for her prom in May and graduation in June.

Marisa came into the office for her consultation in mid-April. With high school coming to a close, she was already worried about finishing out the school year. The idea of having a cast on her nose for one of the final weeks was a bit nerve wracking, but it was something she had wanted for quite a while. So many questions ran through her mind: How long would it take? Would she feel any pain? How much time till she was fully healed? Would she look very different?

Altering your appearance shifts how you see yourself physically and psychologically. Dr. Walker assured her of the subtle and natural correction she would make. They looked at Marisa’s “pre-op” pictures to collaboratively discuss what would be done. It was a comfort to know she had some control over what exactly would happen in the operating room.

Marisa met Dr. Walker at the surgery center at 7:00 am two days later. She got into her gown and was wheeled into the OR where the anesthesiologist placed a mask over her face and had her count down: 10, 9, 8, 7…
When Marisa woke up, she felt a weird pressure in her nose, which was encased with off-white plaster and tape. Her parents were speaking with Dr. Walker, whom she overheard say that the surgery went well. This was it. In ten days she would be able to show off her new nose.

The recovery period was a bit more of a struggle than expected. As an athlete at school, Marisa was not accustomed to staying on the sidelines. It was tempting to jump in on the action, but she took care not to ruin the wonderful gift her parents had given her. It was well worth it.

She spent the weekend resting and saw Dr. Walker the following week for a dressing change. With the lighter dressing, Marisa found that not only could she breathe out of her nose again, but she could breathe better than she had before.

By the time of the big reveal, Marisa was so excited. She sat in Dr. Walker’s ENT room with anticipation. Her mother and Kathleen (the lovely office manager) stood in the room while Dr. Walker peeled the tape off Marisa’s inner cheek bones. The plaster cast slid off with ease revealing a slightly reddened, slender new nose.

Seeing her nose for the first time in over a week, Marisa was speachless. She just looked in the mirror and could not stop smiling. Her mom gasped and said "Oh my god, Marisa, it looks SO good!" Marisa agreed. It looked incredible, and she was so happy with her decision.

The Aftermath

Marisa went to prom later on in May. She looked absolutely stunning in her pink and blue dress. The surgery helped her gain assurance in her appearance and herself at a time when insecurity hits teenage girls the most. She felt so beautiful and so happy.

Promoting self-confidence is one of the most important things we can do for women of all ages.When people feel good about themselves and their appearance, it's empowering. It's one thing to tell someone how beautiful she is, but it's an entirely different thing for her to feel that way about herself.

Marisa now has a stronger and more positive view of herself. She's graduated from high school and is on to even bigger adventures in college with confidence that is as plain as the nose on her face.
Article by
Washington Facial Plastic Surgeon