Rhinoplasty Scar Tissue

Is there any way to correct nose job related scar tissue?

Doctor Answers 27

Rhinoplasty scars

Unsightly external scarring from rhinoplasty is a rare complication. Most rhinoplasty incisions are internal and the external incisions typically heal well.

If scarring is visible, it can often be improved by procedures such as laser resurfacing or dermabrasion. Scar tissue under the skin of the nose may be improved with steroid injections, but this is most effective in the first 6-12 months after surgery.


Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 185 reviews

Scar Tissue Following Rhinoplasty Surgery

Rhinoplasty surgery is frequently accompanied by the development of scar tissue. This scar tissue may occur in several locations including external incisions, the subcutaneous tissue, and the internal nasal cavity. Excess scar tissue can result in impairment of nasal function and altercations in nasal aesthetics.

Scar formation in the vast majority of patients is normal to some degree. It typically responds to conservative management, including massage and tincture of time. In rare situations, more aggressive treatment may be necessary. This may require surgical scar revision or steroid injection.

Major interventions for scarring should not be undertaken for at least one year following rhinoplasty surgery. During this period, scar tissue gradually softens and swelling slowly resolves. In many cases areas of concern will have total resolution without intervention. If you have concerns about scarring following rhinoplasty make sure you discuss this issue with your plastic surgeon. Your surgeon will be able to recommend the appropriate course of action to ensure the best possible result from rhinoplasty surgery.

Steroids and Rhinoplasty Scar Tissue

During the recovery phase of rhinoplasty some patients may develop unwanted scar tissue under the skin. This unwanted scar tissue can cause excess fullness that contributes to an irregular contour whether it be along the bridge or around the tip. In some cases, taping the skin down on a regular basis can minimize the impact of the scar tissue. In other cases, a steroid may be needed to soften or dissolve the scar tissue.

Kenalog is the most common steroid I happen to use for rhinoplasty patients. There are two different concentrations that I use routinely - one mild and the other strong. Sometimes it takes only one injection to reverse the effects of the scar tissue while in other cases a series of steroid injections may be indicated. If a series is required, I will typically space them apart by 6-8 weeks, which I find to be a safe interval between injections.

John M. Hilinski, MD
San Diego Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 25 reviews

Nose scar tissue

Fortunately, undesirable external scarring after rhinoplasty is rare if the external incision is closed meticulously. However, if some unsightly scarring does occur, most can be treated with laser resurfacing or microdermabrasion. Scarring under the nasal skin can occur even in the best hands as a consequence of the body's healing process. Often, simple massage can smooth these down. If unsuccessful, Kenalog injections can be used with good success.

Corey S. Maas, MD
San Francisco Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Correcting Scar Tissue After Rhinoplasty

The best means for correcting scar tissue after rhinoplasty depends on where the scar tissue is and how long it has been there.

There are several types of post-rhinoplasty scars/scar tissue.

1) External - if the surgery was done open or if alar base (nostril excisions) were performed, an unsightly scar can be dermabraded or resurfaced with a laser. Or even re-excised.

2) Internal - internal scar bands can block the airway and should be excised.

3) Subcutaneous- compressive taping during the first 1-6 months of surgery. Steroid injections into the area can be helpful up to one year after surgery, but there is a risk of thinning the skin or causing discoloration.

C. Spencer Cochran, MD
Dallas Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 124 reviews

Nose job scar tissue

Noses heal very differently than a lot of other body parts.  Depending on your tissue type scar tissue formation can be a real issue.  This tends to be in thick skinned individuals. Unfortunately there is no real good solution.  Reoperation often leads to worse results and more scar tissue.  Injections of steroids and 5FU are also available but you must be very careful as they may thin out the overlying skin and cause a host of other issues.  Many times you need to wait years for it to slowly improve.  Tough problem

Rady Rahban, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 66 reviews

Scar tissue after rhinoplasty can be treated

The answer to your question depends on where the scar is. 

If it is external: surface treatments such as dermabrasion can help. Scars can also be surgically revised. There are many options. 

If it is too much scar underneath the skin, steroid injections can help. 

It is best to see a rhinoplasty specialist to help you with this. 

Best, 

Dr. Zoumalan

Richard A. Zoumalan, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

Rhinoplasty Scar Tissue

After a rhinoplasty as well as other facial plastic surgery procedures, the healing process tends to go smoothly and recover better than other areas of the body. Depending on what point you are at during your recovery process, I would recommend waiting it out and giving your nose the proper time to fully heal. If you are still concerned, you should address this with your facial plastic surgeon.

Carlo P. Honrado, MD, FACS
Los Angeles Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 10 reviews

Treatment for Scar Tissue after Rhinoplasty

Thank you for the question. Scar tissue can form wherever incisions are made or tissue planes separated. Depending on the approach and specific maneuvers performed during your rhinoplasty, scar tissue may form in different places. If the scar tissue is internal, this is treatable in most patients using a combination of steroid injections (kenalog in different strengths) and massage.  Over time, as the residual swelling resolves, improvements in contour will be seen. For scars that form at the external incisions, sometimes scar revision is indicated -- though not typically within a year of the surgery.

Evan Ransom, MD
Bay Area Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 77 reviews

Rhinoplasty Scar Tissue

Scarring from rhinoplasty usually heals really well, but it is extremely important that you give it time. Pressure exercises may also help! 

 

Babak Azizzadeh, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 5 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.