Will Columella Fullness Subside with Time?

I had an open Rhinoplasty about 5 months ago. The overall look of my nose is okay except for the tip/columella area. I think my columella looks too wide and my tip a little round. My doctor refined my tip with sutures and added a graft for support in my columella. Is this attributing to my columella looking wider/fuller than before, and will it subside and shrink with time? I'm hoping my nose will soften up and get smaller in size. Any feedback or advice would be lovely.

Doctor Answers 16

Columellar Fullness

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 Swelling may last longer after an open rhinoplasty with placement of a columellar graft.  You understand the graft was placed to increase or maintain tip projection. It will be worth the wait. If your not satisfied with the with of the columella after healing is complete, revision is a relatively minor procedure under local anesthesia.

Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 40 reviews

Tip or columella fullness after open rhinoplasty

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It is usually best to wait between six months and a year before contemplating any revisions.

Revisions in this area are usually straightforward.

Patients must always be realistic, particularly with tip fullness and the overall size of the nose.  Noses that were once very large will not usually look good if they are made excessively small.

Brent Moelleken, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 188 reviews

Columellar thickening

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It's a bit early to discern swelling from the final result at this point but you may be needing that to be looked at. Revisions aren't done until a full year afterwards typically. The incidence is about 6%. Be patient, the need for a revision will be determined by your level of dissatisfaction as well as the result.

Will Columella Fullness Subside with Time?

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The tip will most likely come down with time as the swelling continues to improve. As for the width of the columella, it will depend on how wide the graft is. At 5 months you still have some time to go before your final results are evident.


Michel Siegel, MD

Houston, TX

Will columella fullness subside with time?

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The fullness you are experiencing should improve with time. The tip/columella is the last area for the post-operative tissue swelling to resolve. It can take up to about a year to see the swelling return to normal.

Check with your surgeon to check to make sure everything is healing as anticipated otherwise.

Columella fullness after open rhinoplasty

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Post operative swelling and stiffness for a rhinoplasty may take 6-12 months to resolve (or more).  Since the nose is vertical on your face, the tip and columella will "collect" all the swelling for a longer time than at the top of your nose.  The open approach to rhinoplasty severs the lymphatics of the columella and the lower part of the nose, sometimes causing a more prolonged swelling in this area.  As these lymphatic connections "re-connect", you will start to see less swelling.   Be patient, but also communicate with your surgeon. Certainly the tip work and grafting that he/she performed will contribute to your swelling.

Ricardo Izquierdo, MD
Oak Brook Plastic Surgeon

A Columellar Strut May Increase The Width Of The Columella After Rhinoplasty

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Fullness in the columella after rhinoplasty at 6 months after surgery can be a contributing factor. A columellar strut is placed between the medial footplates which make up some of the columellar width. This can increase its width by 1 or 2mms dependent upon the width of the graft. That combined with persistent swelling will definitely make the columella appear slightly wider. Despite the widespread use of columellar struts, increased columellar width is not reported as being a significant problem with its use. I would wait a full year after surgery so that every little bit of swelling is gone before making a final judgment. 

Columella fullness after rhinoplasty

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5 months after rhinoplasty the swelling of the columella should have subsided almost completely. Tip graft, columella graft may contribute to the residual swelling and may not resolve. Correction is possible but you should carefully consider this.

Andrew Pichler, MD
Sacramento Facial Plastic Surgeon

Rhinoplasty - columella thick

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It's hard to know how much thinner your columella will get - it depends on how thick a piece of cartilage your surgeon used.  However, I'd wait until about a year after your surgery before proceeding with revision surgery.  I'd continue to see your surgeon, have him document changes with photos, and if you are still unhappy after a year, I'm sure he/she would be happy to revise it for you.

Dr. Cat Begovic M.D.

Columella and width

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Sometimes a columella strut can contribute to the columella width and certainly swelling can as well.

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.