Help! Why is my Mid Bridge (Cartilage) Still SO Swollen 5 Weeks After Open Rhinoplasty-ONLY Had Tip Work Done? (photo)

My mid bridge is bigger than my tip and it makes my nose look very odd. you can see the outline of my upper lateral cartilage when I smile. I am 5 weeks post op. it was an open procedure but only tip work was done! Is this normal? How do I know if this is swelling or my new shape? My nose tip was very bulbous before, Surgeon trimmed Lower lateral cartilage and tip cartilage.

Doctor Answers 8

Nasal bridge also swells during tip rhinoplasty

Thank you for your question. As others have stated it is normal to have swelling of the area above the tip when only a tip rhinoplasty is done. This swelling should be decreasing somewhat by 6-8 weeks, but may take 3 months. Be sure to see her plastic surgeon and express your concerns. In some cases the upper portion of the nose may also need to be narrowed.

Help! Why is my Mid Bridge (Cartilage) Still SO Swollen 5 Weeks After Open Rhinoplasty-ONLY Had Tip Work Done?

Dear Ella,

Thank you for your question.  Still when doing work on just the tip, more than just the tip is disected.  This is in order to get better exposure to the tip.  Because the entire area is disected, it will swell. It takes 6-12 months for this to subside.  Posting before and afters helps a lot in the discussion.

Best Wishes,

Pablo Prichard, MD

Pablo Prichard, MD
Phoenix Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 47 reviews


Even though only tip work may have been done; the entire nose will swell.  Discuss with your surgeon.  Donald R. Nunn MD  Atlanta Plastic Surgeon

Donald Nunn, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 47 reviews

Mid bridge swelling and tip

Eventhough you jus had tip work, the entire skin envelope is usually elevated thus creating swelling in all areas of the nose.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Tip Swelling after Rhinoplasty

Thanks for the question and the photos. The open rhinoplasty approach is a great tool for precise changes in the nasal tip. However, as part of this approach, the soft tissue is elevated up to the nasal bones.  Though the majority of the swelling that results goes down in a couple weeks, the rest can take a few weeks or more.  In some cases, massage, taping, or small injections of a steroid can help it along.  If these things don't work, make sure to see your surgeon often or seek a second opinion.

Evan Ransom, MD
Bay Area Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 110 reviews

Help! Why is my Mid Bridge (Cartilage) Still SO Swollen 5 Weeks After Open Rhinopla

Again only 5 weeks post! But why the open technique for a tip platy?? Thus your healing would double in time. Also the posted photos are barely adequate to advise. Seek IN PERSON second opinions. 

Darryl J. Blinski, MD
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 173 reviews

Swelling after Open Rhinoplasty

Dont worry, it is completely expected to have swelling at this point, particularly if an "open" approach was used.  The most important thing to remember is that you will not see your final result for 9-12 months.  It is very reasonable to discuss these concerns with your Plastic Surgeon at your earliest convenience.

Jarrod Little, MD
Louisville Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 21 reviews

Help! Why is my Mid Bridge (Cartilage) Still SO Swollen 5 Weeks After Open Rhinoplasty-ONLY Had Tip Work Done?

       If only tip work was done, it is reasonable to expect that other areas should return to preoperative state with time.  Open rhinoplasties usually have a longer period of swelling, and I would give yourself at least 6 months to a year.  Kenneth Hughes, MD Los Angeles, CA

Kenneth B. Hughes, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 492 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.