Is it too late for a doctor to diagnose if my nose is fractured or hurt?

I got punched in the nose approximately two weeks ago. There was no bleeding or bruising (there might be a minor bruising but I didn't notice anything) I "feel" like my nose doesn't look the same. It looks kind of bigger and also the bump I always had on my nose looks bigger too. If there's a minor fracture or something similar, will a doctor be able to diagnose it after 16 days? Isn't it too late to go to the doctor? Will an x-ray show if anything major has happened to my nose after 16 days?

Doctor Answers 6

Fractured Nose

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Dear Negnegk,

No, it is not too late for an evaluation.  An ear, nose and throat doctor who is also a facial plastic surgeon has all of the expertise to evaluate and treat your nose for functional and aesthetic concerns.  She/he will be able to put your mind at ease in terms of the whether you have injured the nose bones or the cartilages of the nose. 

An exam by a specialist is typically diagnostic.  An x-ray or CT scan is rarely necessary, and it may not reveal injuries to the cartilages of the nose. 

Best of luck,

Dr. Michelle Yagoda

New York Facial Plastic Surgeon

Consultation 2 Weeks after Possible Nasal Fracture

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I suggest you consult with a rhinoplasty surgeon as soon as reasonably possible for a physical examination. If there is no undesirable change in the appearance or any obstruction to your breathing no treatment will be necessary even if you did break your nose. I don't find that x-rays are helpful but I rely on a thorough physical examination.

Richard W. Fleming, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 40 reviews

Nasal trauma

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You should go for an evaluation to see if your nose is significantly deviated.   An x-ray may or may not show a fracture.

Is it too late to for a doctor to diagnose if my nose is fractured or hurt?

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It is never too late to go to the doctor and have an evaluation on your nose. Trauma to the nose can cause a displaced nasal fracture, a non-displaced nasal fracture, a fracture of the septum known as a deviated nasal septum, and a dislocation of one or both of the upper lateral cartilages off of the nasal bones. Each one of these issues are treated differently with surgery. A thorough internal and external examination of the nose is required to make a determination about how to proceed. It's also important to document the extent of the fracture from the trauma. For more information and many examples of crooked nose repair in our practice, please see the link and the video below

Nasal evaluation

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Hello and thank you for your question.  The best advice you can receive is from an in-person consultation.  The most important aspect is to find a surgeon you are comfortable with. I recommend that you seek consultation with a qualified board-certified plastic surgeon who can evaluate you in person.

Best wishes and good luck.

Richard G. Reish, M.D.
Harvard-trained plastic surgeon

Nose fracture and Timing

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If you fracture your nose there is a period of 2-4 weeks for treatment. The worse the fracture, the longer the time you have to fix it. Fixing it is really about deviation and major bone shifts. If you have a chip fracture or a non-displaced fracture, likely no treatment is needed. 

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.