Nicotine and Rhinoplasty question. Can this effect the outcome of nasal surgery or increase any risks associated with it?
Doctor Answers 14
Rhinoplasty and Smoking
Thanks for your question! Every physican has their own pre and post-op instructions for rhinoplasty patients. I recommend that my patients discontinue all nicotine products before and after surgery including the gum. This ensures that their nose gets proper blood-flow which largely effects healing and the overall surgical outcome. It's always best to check with your surgeon any time post-op questions come up, since they have the most comprehensive understanding of your history.
Avoid Nicotine in All Forms
I would recommend quitting nicotine all-together before undergoing any cosmetic procedure. While it’s true that smoking is worse for your health and more potentially damaging, nicotine in any form (including Nicorette gum) may contribute to issues with constricting blood vessels and adversely affect your body’s ability to naturally heal from your procedure.
The Effects of Nicotine on Rhinoplasty Results
As a board-certified facial plastic surgeon, I recommend my patients to avoid all nicotine products pre and post surgery. Nicotine consumed in any form constricts the blood vessels, therefore inhibiting rhinoplasty recovery and ultimately increasing swelling and discomfort. Granted, smoking will not alter the results of your rhinoplasty, but it will make your recovery process more difficult than without nicotine. If you find it difficult to cease smoking entirely, a nicotine patch will lessen the risks of recovery issues. The nicotine patch provides a constant low level dose, whereas with nicotine gum, the dose is volatile. I suggest avoiding nicotine for at least a few months into your recovery stage. Your body will thank you!
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So what you have is a set up for trouble if you use nicotine.
On top of all this, if you smoked a long time, you have already decreased blood to your tissues due to small vessel disease.
If tip grafts are needed, this will further decrease tip blood supply.
I would not operate on someone who is currently on nicotine.
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.