Rhinoplasty recovery time? (photos)

I inherited a prominent nose and also have had my nose broken twice during sports as a teen. I was interested in having the hump at the bridge shaved down but I was wondering what would be the estimated recovery time for such a procedure. Thanks! The photo below is myself

Doctor Answers 14

Rhinoplasty Recovery Time

Recovery from Rhinoplasty is fairly predictable.  What I tell my patients is there is essentially three phases of recovery.

The first phase is the first week in which they will typically have a bandage on their nose made up of some light brown (flesh colored) tape covered by a firm splint.  The nose is not packed unless there was an issue with bleeding during or at the end of the procedure.  (Packing is extremely rare, given the more contemporary Rhinoplasty techniques now employed as well as the medications utilized in the OR that minimize bleeding.)  Because the nose is not typically packed, the postop pain is minimal, and feels more like congestion from a head cold.  Even if you have zero bruising and swelling, the bandage is a dead giveaway, so most patients lay low socially the first 7 seven days.

At one week, the dressing is delicately removed in the office and the nostrils and skin cleaned.  At this point there is obviously some swelling, and I tell my patients in advance that between the first and sixth week I wouldn't have any keepsake photos taken, but will be fine for their normal day to day activities except for any contact sports.  I advise them not to bump the nose or wear glasses for the first six weeks as the bones heal into their new position.  During that second week they may require some makeup depending on if they bruised, and if so to what degree.  Our Esthetician routinely sees every Rhinoplasty patient at their one week postop appointment, and if some camouflaging is indicated, helps the patient with that.

The last phase is between 6 weeks and one year.  At six weeks, there is typically still a small amount of swelling noted, and is typically in the tip of the nose.  This is swelling that usually only I and the patient are aware of, but not anyone else.  Over the remainder of that year this small amount of swelling waxes and wanes and eventually is permanently gone.  There are no restrictions from glasses or activities after six weeks.

Hope you found this answer helpful.  All the best!

Atlanta Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 51 reviews

Recovery Time Post Rhinoplasty

Allow for 7-10 days of recovery, possibly longer depending on how quickly your body heals. The amount of swelling and bruising post rhinoplasty will vary for each patient. You should wait 3-4 weeks to exercise. It may take a year post op or more to seethe final results.Most of the healing process will be determined by your genetics. It may take longer if you are a male or have thick skin.

Rod J. Rohrich, MD
Dallas Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 64 reviews

Rhinoplasty recovery time?

Rhinoplasty is not a particularly painful or difficult recovery though the swelling make take up to 1 year to fully resolve.  

Kenneth Hughes, MD

Beverly Hills, CA

Kenneth B. Hughes, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 496 reviews

Rhinoplasty Recovery

Dear Amartin, The immediate recovery time is seven days for most patients. I remove my patients splints at seven days post op and while the patients still have swelling for several months before they see their final results most patients have minimal bruising at this time and may return to work, school and other daily activities except those limited in your post operative instructions. See the videos listed below to see how most patients appear at their splint removal. The videos will give you a broad spectrum of over fifty patients to see the varying degrees of swelling or bruising at this time frame. I hope this is helpful to you. Best regards, Michael V. Elam, M.D.

Michael Elam, MD
Orange County Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 210 reviews

Recovery time after rhinoplasty

Hi there, 

Thank you for sharing your photos and question. 
A hump reduction, straightening the nose, and refining the nasal tip are good goals for you. 

Recovery after rhinoplasty is a little bit different for every person. Usually, people take 1-2 weeks off school or work. It is a personal decision to decide how much time off to take. It mostly depends on your comfort level having other know that you had surgery. Some people go back to work 3-4 days after surgery and some take a little longer.
Pain is usually well controlled with medication. Mild headache and nasal congestion is normal. It can make it hard to sleep at the beginning.

The first week after surgery, the bandages, stitches, and casts usually come off. At 2 weeks, most of the bruises are gone. At 1 month after surgery, 80% of the swelling is gone. It will take one year for all of the swelling to reabsorb. Most people can't tell you had surgery a month after surgery (even though you and your surgeon can tell). 

I recommend no heavy exercise for the first week and slowly working your way up back to your normal after that. Your nose will be sensitive to sun for the year after the surgery and sunblock is important to avoid swelling.

Let me finish by saying, most patients are so thrilled to have the rhinoplasty that it makes the recovery worthwhile!

Hope this helps
Good luck!

Myriam Loyo, MD
Portland Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 10 reviews

Recovery time after Rhinoplasty

Based on the photos you provided, you would appear to be a good candidate for Rhinoplasty surgery. I recommend patients stay at home the first 7-10 days after their Rhinoplasty surgery. At that point, they typically return to routine daily activities but are advised to avoid strenuous activities, weight lifting, etc. for 4-6 weeks. In my experience, the best doctor to recommend what will be best for YOU is a board certified plastic surgeon who has experience performing rhinoplasty surgeries and has results that align with your aesthetic. Good luck with your surgery!

George John Alexander, MD, FACS
Las Vegas Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 38 reviews

Rhinoplasty Recovery Time

In general I tell my rhinoplasty patients it will take about 10 days for them to be comfortable in a professional or personal setting. However, the nose will continue to heal and improve for one year after the operation. I instruct them to avoid strenuous physical activity for 2 weeks and any activities with a risk of nasal trauma for 6 weeks.

Richard W. Fleming, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 39 reviews

Rhinoplasty recovery time?

 Hi, I have performed and taught Rhinoplasty for 30 years.  From the photos, your nose is a bit crooked, has a dorsal hump and a wide nasal tip.  Closed Rhinoplasty can reduce the hump, make the nose straighter with a thinner, more refined and feminine nasal tip.  The chin is weak which creates an imbalance, in the face, making the nose look larger and the mid face appear top heavy.  Chin augmentation, with a chin implant, will add projection to the chin creating harmony and balance to the lower face.  These can and are often performed at the same.  The healing time for a Rhinoplasty is a few weeks however the final results are often not achieved until 6 - 9 months post Rhinoplasty.  There should be minimal bruising at 1 week at which time, I remove the external nasal cast.  I do not place packing in the nose post Rhinoplasty, unless I am performing a Septoplasty as well.  Hope this helps.  

Francis R. Palmer, III, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 25 reviews

Rhinoplasty recovery time

 In our practice, we perform closed rhinoplasty with all the incisions placed on the inside of the nose. There is no visible external scar on the columella. A cast/ splint is applied across the nose and left intact for about 6 days after the procedure. Most patients have some degree of visible swelling and bruising which lasts approximately 10-14 days. Depending upon the skin type and techniques used during the rhinoplasty procedure, there can be residual swelling located in the tip of the nose for several months after the procedure.  Full healing takes approximately one year.  Rhinoplasty is a difficult endeavor, so choose your surgeon very wisely based on extensive experience. For more information and many examples, please see the link and the video below

William Portuese, MD
Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 145 reviews

Rhinoplasty recovery time, etc.

A rhinoplasty can correct your deviated crooked nose as well as improve your breathing , remove the hump, refine your tip etc. The recovery time is normally 7 to 10 days with just a small amount of coverup makeup. 

Toby Mayer, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 34 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.