Does a Nose Go Back to Normal After Breaking?

I recently broke my nose and had it put back into shape by the hospital two weeks after the incident. Although my nose has been put back into place by the surgeon it is still not back to 'normal' so to speak. Was just wondering if it would every go back to normal through time and bone naturally healing or if I would just need to live with this the way it is from now on? Thanks

Doctor Answers 5

Does a Nose Go Back to Normal After Breaking?

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The answer depends upon exactly what is still wrong with your nose. If there is swelling, that will definitely settle and improve with time. If your nose is still shifted off to the side it is unlikely to improve without surgery to make it more straight. The best thing at this point would be to followup with the surgeon at the hospital that performed your closed reduction to ask about the type of changes you can expect to occur with time. I hope my answer is helpful.

Stephen Weber MD, FACS

Does a Nose Go Back to Normal After Breaking?

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The swelling may take several weeks to months to completely resolve.

Kenneth Hughes, MD

Los Angeles, CA

Once a nose is broken, it never goes back to it's original size and shape.

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Hello kammy11,

I'm sorry to hear that you broke your nose.  It was a good thing that a physician at the hospital was able to perform a closed reduction after two weeks.  That can often be a hard thing to do since bone callous formation makes it harder to move fracture fragments after about 10 days in most adults.  Unfortunately you will have to wait 6-12 months to see what kind of position your nose ultimately heals in.  Unless you had a non-displaced nasal bone fracture (x-rays show a break in the nasal bones, but they are not shifted), it is impossible to put things back together exactly.  I wouldn't worry too much if the only problem is an altered shape.  You can have a rhinoplasty operation to improve the cosmetics of your nose at some time after all the swelling is finished and the bones have completely healed.  If you have developed breathing troubles then you might need more urgent treatment.

Find yourself a specialist in Rhinoplasty to follow up on your recovery.

Good luck,

Dr. Shah

Manish H. Shah, MD, FACS
Denver Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 69 reviews

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Post reduction swelling

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Hello. The nose will always take several months to recover from any surgical procedure. So swelling should be expected. However there is a chance the reduction was not done properly or the bone healed in an unfavorable manner. If either one of these happens, you may need another operation. If you are not happy with the way your nose looks 3-6 months after the reduction, go see a nose specialist for an evaluation.

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Repair of a Nasal fracture

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 There are too many variables to determine whether or not your nose will go back to normal after being fractured. When the nose is fractured, we recommend reduction of the nasal bones with medial and lateral osteotomies to reset the nasal bones back into alignment. We do not perform a closed  reduction. Occasionally  we will also place a spreader graft underneath the concave side of the upper lateral cartilages if they are creating a cosmetic or functional  problem. 

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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.