How Much Does Elevating Head After Rhinoplasty Surgery Help Reduce Swelling?

I am a male with thick skin who just had primary rhinoplasty (hump removal significant cartlage reduction) a week ago. During the course of this time my head was elevated greatly at angles greater than 45 degrees and have experienced a big improvement in the swelling between my eyes. I am just wondering now is it better to keep my head elevated at 45 degrees or more even when sleeping reduce swelling and healing time? How long should I do this for? Also topic question plz.

Doctor Answers 4

Elevation to reduce swelling

In the short term it definitely helps.  You will likely be less swollen in the morning if you sleep with your head elevated.  In the long term, it probably makes no difference.

Abilene Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.4 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

Head elevation for swelling after rhinoplasty

Sleeping in a recliner chair or with several pillows to elevate the head following rhinoplasty can decrease the amount of swelling, particularly around the eyes, and also probably speeds up resolution of swelling outside of the nose. Typically, facial and eyelid swelling peak around 3-5 days and then start to subside when sleeping with the head elevated. After that time, there is probably little benefit in swelling reduction if you continue to sleep with your head elevated.

Jamil Ahmad, MD
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 28 reviews

Elevation of the head to reduce swelling after a rhinoplasty

There are many things that can be done to improve swelling after a rhinoplasty.  Ice definitely helps as does elevation.  I would continue to use elevation as long as you feel it is beneficial.  

Jeffrey Zwiren, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

Elevating the head after rhinoplasty has a modest effect on swelling.

Elevation of the head allows gravity to pull fluid away from the nose. This generally has a modest effect on swelling and is recommended by most plastic surgeons.

Vincent N. Zubowicz, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 35 reviews

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