How Long After Open Rhinoplasty Can You Go on a Longhaul Flight Usually?

Doctor Answers 3

How long after open rhinoplasty can you go on a long flight?

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In general, we advise patients to refrain from flying the first 2 weeks after surgery. Not doing so can increase swelling and delay healing time. After one month, everything should be ok. I would recommend following up with your surgeon, as he or she may have specific guidelines they would like you to follow. I hope this helps, and best of luck.

Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 49 reviews

Rhinoplasty and flying

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Usually the splint and sutures are removed within a week after surgery. If you are healing well, then after that you pretty much can fly but you might feel congested.  Always best to check with your surgeon.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Flying following Open Rhinoplasty

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I advise my patients to wait at least 2 weeks following rhinoplasty to get in a plane and experience the pressure changes that occur in the airplane cabin.  The pressures inside the cabin usually are kept at an equivalent of 6000 to 8000 ft.  This decrease in pressure will cause a certain volume of air to expand about 1.5 times.  So if there is a small bubble of air trapped under the skin following surgery, it will try to expand at altitude and create increasing pressure on the surrounding tissues.  This could possible cause small healing vessels to start bleeding and push apart tissues that are in the early stages of healing.  However, if you are at least 2 weeks out, the tissues have glued together quite tightly and any small pockets of trapped air will have been resorbed.  Just stay clear of people stowing and removing luggage from overhead storage compartments, as a good bump to your nose could still displace bone and cartilage placement up to 4 or 5 weeks out.

Richard Parfitt, MD
Madison Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.4 out of 5 stars 36 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.