How and when Does the Nose Collapse After Rhinoplasty?

I saw collapsed noses in before pics of rhinoplasty revision pics. How did this happen? Can I have a good nose for months , then it suddenly/gradually collapse? Or the collapse happens during the surgery. I am sorry for being a little paranoid and obsessive , but its a really difficult experience for me during the first weeks post-op.

Doctor Answers 8

Nasal collapse after rhinoplasty

Nasal collapse after rhinoplasty typically occurs gradually over several years. Very often the nose looks fine initially (even the first year or so) before the weakened underlying nasasl structure is overcome by scar contracture and the shrink-wrap effect of the skin.

The areas that can be affected by this contracture process include:

  • middle third of the nose which can cause narrowing and possibly nasal obstruction due to its effect on the internal nasal valve
  • supra-alar tip which would lead to an unnatural pinching of the tip
  • tip projection/rotation leading to drooping of the tip over time
  • tip cartilage distortion or irregularities

This nasal collapse can be prevented by using a structure-based rhinoplasty approach where the nasal structure is augmented (typically using your own cartilage) to ensure that it can withstand this force. This method is a little more involved and takes a bit more time but I find that it is definitely worth it in the long term.

Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 21 reviews

Nasal collapse after rhinoplasty

What you are referring to is a middle vault collapse. This occurs during surgery and is due to over reseceted upper lateral cartilage, nasal septum, or nasal bones. If a rhinoplasty is well performed and adequate tissue is resected, the nasal structure will not collapse months after surgery. Good luck

Kevin Sadati, DO
Orange County Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 208 reviews

Nasal Collapse after Rhinoplasty

Significant nasal collapse can become apparent within several weeks after rhinoplasty as swelling resolves. Subtle changes may occur over 6-12 months. Be optimistic - you cannot doing anything to change your result until healing is complete.

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

Nasal collapse

Sometimes mid vault colapse becomes more apparant after the swelling dissipates. This usually occurs during the first year post-op.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

How and when Does the Nose Collapse After Rhinoplasty?

Initial surgical result is not an indication how the nose will look one year and longer after the surgery.

The bones and gartilages form the support to the soft tissues of the nose, excessively altered and weakened structural support can cause  a deformity(collapse etc,) several months after the surgery. 

Erel Laufer, MD
Dunedin Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 37 reviews

Collapsed noses after Rhinoplasty

Collapse, of the nose, after Rhinoplasty occurs because to much bone or cartilage was removed during the Rhinoplasty.  The nasal bones are set 1 month after a Rhinoplasty and things will not just out of the blue collapse.  The collapse happens during the surgery and is temporarily hidden by swelling but only is typically visible as soon as the cast is taken off and the shape revealed.

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

Nose Should Never Collapse

This is a simple answer....If you go to an experienced and well qualified rhinoplasty surgeon the answer is never. In 30 years of doing rhinoplasties (3000-4000) I have never had a nose collapse. It is important to discuss your concerns with your plastic surgeon.

Richard Galitz, MD, FACS
Miami Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 11 reviews

Nasal collapse after rhinoplasty

Hello again,

The nose can collapse for multiple reasons with nasal surgery. More commonly the skin and cartilage gradually becomes weaker with age causing collapse. Only after a comprehensive evaluation can a rhinoplasty surgeon help determine appropriate options for you. Best of luck.

Dr. Chaboki

Houtan Chaboki, MD
Washington DC Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 85 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.