1 week post-op open rhinoplasty; nose is bigger than before rhinoplasty?

I had an open rhinoplasty one week ago and right after surgery my nose looked like my ideal size. However, now it looks bigger and almost bigger than before my rhinoplasty. I'm aware that it takes up to a year for the final results and the size and shape will change as the swelling goes down but how much smaller can I expect it to get? Will it go back down to the smaller size right after surgery? I'm very happy with the shape it is just much bigger than I expected.

Doctor Answers 3

Be Patient With Postoperative Rhinoplasty Swelling

The size of your nose that you noticed directly after surgery is approximately the size it will be once the swelling you are currently experiencing subsides. Swelling is the body's normal reaction to trauma or injury, as white blood cells and fluids accumulate in the area in an attempt to repair the injury. The process takes some time, which is why your nose looked smaller directly after surgery than it does now. The initial swelling also takes time to subside – but by the third week most patients see a reduction of 60%.

As you noted, it can take up to a year for all of the swelling to subside and for the full and optimal results of your rhinoplasty to be apparent. I understand your eagerness to know what you will look like. However, you can't rush your body.  It can take longer for the swelling to subside if you have thick skin or a revision surgery. Just be patient and if you have any other questions, always feel free to contact the board-certified plastic surgeon who performed your rhinoplasty. I hope this helps.

Rhinoplasty Recovery - Don't worry!

At 1 week, you are very early in your recovery period and the nose is expected to be quite swollen at this point.  The majority of the swelling will resolve in 3-6 months, and will continue to resolve as your nose heals for up to 1-2 years. You have not reached your final shape as the nose will continue to heal and reduce in size for up to a year. Once it does reach its final shape you may be more pleased with the appearance of your nose.

Donald B. Yoo, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 47 reviews

Recommend Following up with your surgeon

Swelling is absolutely expected after surgery.  The swelling will drastically improve over the next few weeks and ultimately need about 1 year to fully take shape.  Patience and following up with your surgeon is important during the year to monitor your healing.

Karan Dhir, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 48 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.