Nasal Bridge Getting Worse

I had septorhinoplasty 2 years ago, including correction of a prominent hump on the bridge. The bridge has seemed pretty straight since the operation, but over the last 2 weeks seems more irregular, prominent and the overlying skin looks whitish like it's been stretched, & I can palpate an irregular bridge again. I've had a couple of minor knocks recently (nothing major, no pain). Could this just be swelling disappearing and revealing irregularities underneath? Or something more going on? Thanks

Doctor Answers 5

Rhinoplasty Result Changes with Time

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A prominent plastic surgeon in Mexico has been able to photograph his rhinoplasty patients up to 20 years of follow-up, and the nose does change with time (very minor but noticeable).

What you are experiencing is normal and is a result of the healing process.  If the changes are palpable but not visible, I would not recommend any more surgery, as the same process will start again!

Santa Ana Plastic Surgeon

Changes 2 years after rhinoplasty

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As your rhinoplasty matures there are late changes that can present as long as two years after your procedure.  It sounds like you may be a candidate for a small revision, perhaps something as simple as placing a small amount of graft material (biologic mesh or a small skin graft) under the skin to cover the irregular dorsal contour.  As long as the nose has not collapsed (saddle nose deformity) you should be able to fix this without too much risk.

The nose keeps on changing

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After rhinoplasty your nose will likely continue to change for the rest of your life.  That said, the vast majority of that change occurs intially and it is a very slow pace that is nearly imperceptible after a few years.  It is possible that as scarring continues, the "shrink-wrap effect" is taking place that makes slight imperfections palpable or noticeable.  If you can't see it (can only feel it), then I would leave it alone.  If you begin to see a problem, it may be worth following up with your surgeon.

Colin Pero, MD
Dallas Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 15 reviews

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As the nose heals, the skin will thin out and irregular bones will become palpable. This may also be an exposed graft. In any case, it depends on how you look not what you feel.

David A. Bray, Sr., MD
Los Angeles Facial Plastic Surgeon

Rhinoplasty; Long Term Changes

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One of the most difficult parts of performing rhinoplasty is anticipating the long term changes that will occur.  Although we like to think of the results as being fairly stable, in reality, the nose continues to change slowly over the years.  It is doubtful that swelling persisted for two years but it is possible that a camoflauge graft resorbed to reveal the underlying irregularities.  It is impossible to know exactly what is happening without an examination.  You should go back to your original surgeon to discuss your concern.

Joseph Campanelli, MD
Portland Facial Plastic Surgeon

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.