When do most patients begin to like their nose after rhinoplasty?

I am about 10 days post operation and I hate what I see so far. I had a bump removed which looks great from the profile now, but now my entire nose from the front view looks wider. I had work done as well to narrow my nose including the tip, but everything seems much wider. When do most patients get excited about their nose? Is it normal to not like it yet? How often do you see patients hate their nose at first but then love it later?

Doctor Answers 7

Rhinoplasty (nose job) results after 3 months

It usually takes about 3 months for the majority of swelling to resolve after a rhinoplasty, but even after that it may take upwards of one year. If a reduction in the size of the nose was performed, the skin has memory and will assume its previous shape through swelling under the skin. This will get better. 

Austin Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 46 reviews


Dear plcameron83, 

I personally remove my patients splints on their 7th day after surgery and most patients are very excited with the look of their new nose at their first look reveal. When removing a hump on the nose, it is important that the surgeon performs osteotomies to bring the nasal bones back together and to narrow the bridge of the nose. If you did not have osteotomies, then this may lead to your nose appearing wider than before surgery. With that being said, the best person to discuss your concerns with is your surgeon as he or she knows best what techniques were used during your procedure and where you are in your recovery phase. It's important to keep in mind that you may simply be seeing excessive swelling that will dissipate over the coming months. See examples of a first look reveal video above. Best regards, Michael V. Elam MD

Michael Elam, MD
Orange County Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 210 reviews

Recovery after rhinoplasty

Thanks for your question. The first few weeks the nose looks swollen and tip is wide and often bigger than pre op level. People start to like their nose around 2-3 months and really appreciate the subtle tip refinement by 4-6 months. Good luck 

Jeffrey Jumaily, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 10 reviews

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Your nose should become narrower as you continue healing, only 10 days postoperative rhinoplasty surgery.

It's a good sign that you like your profile. Everyone looks a bit peculiar 7-14 days postoperative rhinoplasty and swelling on front view will be present for many weeks. Without photos, it is difficult to evaluate your concerns, so it may be best making a followup visit with your surgeon sooner than scheduled. Wishing you well. Dr Joseph

Eric M. Joseph, MD
West Orange Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 421 reviews

Post rhinoplasty concerns

Having surgery to change your appearance was a big step and so it is normal to have anxieties about the results. You are in the very early stages of healing and the final results are perhaps a year away. The upper portion of the nose which is bony tends to reveal it's results earlier than the lower cartilaginous portion of the nose. The latter relies on swelling to subside as well as the formation of scar tissue before the final results are obtained. Be patient as it is a slow process to achieve the final results.

R. Graham Boyce, MD
Covington Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 2 reviews


Thank you for your question.

It is important to consult with your surgeon about any questions or concerns you may have. You are extremely early in your recovery period and your nose will begin healing and changing, this will continue over the course of a year to year and a half. Swelling can cause the appearance of unevenness or enlargement. It takes 6 months for 90% of the swelling to resolve after a rhinoplasty. During this waiting period, several treatment options can reduce the swelling. First, post-operative taping is imperative to decrease swelling and mold the shape of the nose. This can be performed for a minimum of 2 weeks with recommendations commonly for 3 months. Second, a short course of oral steroids (Medrol dose pack) can be beneficial in the early stages to decrease swelling and pain. Third, I commonly use a dilute solution of Kenalog with Marcaine to decrease swelling of the nasal tip. If after 12-18 months, you are still unhappy with your results, I would contact your surgeon or a board certified plastic surgeon for a revision.
Best of luck in your recovery!

James Fernau, MD, FACS
Board Certified ENT
Board Certified Plastic Surgery
Member of ASPS, ASAPS, ISAPS, The Rhinoplasty Society, AAFPRS, OTO/HNS, ASLMS, International Federation for Adipose Therapeutics & Science

James Fernau, MD, FACS
Pittsburgh Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 75 reviews

Recovering from rhinoplasty and evaluating your result

Recovering from rhinoplasty is a healing process. Part of that process is waiting for swelling to go down to see your result. 

In the first 6-8 weeks the majority of swelling will go down. Over the next 6-9 months you'll experience a downward trending rollercoaster of swelling going up and down depending on your exposure to heat, sun, or salt. At one year, you're close to your final result; however, the nose is known to continue healing and refining by very small amounts for years after that. 

The swelling commonly goes down in an uneven way. First one side and then the other goes down, which may give the appearance of a crooked nose until the other side catches up. The tip is the last area to settle down. It's important to follow your surgeon's instructions and keep your follow-up appointments so your surgeon can track your progress toward a safe and happy outcome. Safety comes first. 

Victor Chung, MD
San Diego Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 10 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.