Nose Still Plugged10 Weeks Post Primary Rhinoplasty: Swelling or is Something Wrong?

Hello, 10 weeks post Rhinoplasty (Open surgery w/packing) and still having problems breathing through my nose. My nose sometimes whistles. My doctor said it is allergies but I have never had allergies and don't have any other symptoms. My nose still feels very tender so I am leaning towards swelling or perhaps my nose was injured during the surgery. Working out is very difficult and breathing through my mouth is unattractive. Should I see another doctor or give it more time to heal? Thank you.

Doctor Answers 8

Prolonged Nasal Obstruction after rhinoplasty

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The nose should not be obstructed for longer than two weeks after a rhinoplasty. If you had a septoplasty as well, then it can take up to one month to get back to good breathing. The tenderness is normal. The whistling noise is not. You might have a nasal septal perforation. I would advise you to get a second opinion as well with an ear, nose and throat doctor to get checked for nasal allergies or other sinus type issues.


Dr. Janjua


This answer is not intended as and does not substitute for medical advice. The information presented in this posting is for patients’ education only. As always, I encourage you to see your personal physician for further evaluation of your individual case.

Bedminster Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 126 reviews

Blocked Nose and Difficulty Breathing after Rhinoplasty

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Faith-You must be feeling frustrated to not be breathing through your nose after 10 weeks. If you have never had allergies prior to surgery, it is unlikely that you have developed them since. The whistling could be a sign of restricted airflow, or a hole that may have developed in your septum- the cartilage in the middle of your nose that divides it into two nostrils. If you have not had an ENT evaluation, I would recommend finding one in your area that specializes in rhinoplasty. Most ENT's also have equipment that can look with a small camera inside of the nose to ensure you do not have a blockage causing your breathing difficulty. I hope you find a solution to your problem soon. Best, Dr S

Travis L. Shaw, MD
Richmond Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 22 reviews

Nasal Obstruction 10 Weeks after Primary Rhinoplasty

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Depending on what was done during your operation, some obstruction is possible 10 weeks after your rhinoplasty. If you never had allergies, you don't have them now. If your not satisfied after taling to your surgeon, consult with a facial plastic surgeon who had previous ENT training.

Richard W. Fleming, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 43 reviews

Nasal obstruction afer surgery

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It is hard to say why you still have obstruction without having all the facts. I do not know what the extenet of surgery was, what type of rhnioplasty worl you had, etc..  Some peopel do have long term obstruction that improves over time. Sometimes rhinoplasty make the obstruction worse, better, or no improvement.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Nasal obstruction following rhinoplasty

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Depending on how extensive your surgery was, obstruction 10 weeks following surgery may still be a possibility.  There is undoubtedly some persistent generalized swelling, which often contributes to nasal obstruction.  In the meantime, continued use of nasal saline spray, and possibly a nasal steroid may be in order.  An examination by your surgeon should reveal the cause of your congestion.

Scott K. Thompson, MD
Salt Lake City Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 113 reviews

Need re-evaluation

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You may require revision surgery, I suggest a second opinion. 10 weeks is adequate for the swelling inside your nose to settle down. I suspect you have a structural problem that can only be corrected by well designed surgical procedure carried out by an experience nasal specialist surgeon.

Kris Conrad, MD
Toronto Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 11 reviews

Nose Plugged 10 Weeks After Rhinoplaty

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10 weeks after a Rhinoplasty, you should be seeing some improvement in your ability to breathe nasally.  However,you are still within the window where some degree of swelling is likely to be present.  Use of nasal saline drops and/or a nasal steroid like Nasonex (prescription) may be helpful, but this is a matter best addressed by your own Surgeon.

Stephen Prendiville, MD
Fort Myers Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 104 reviews

Plugged nose after rhinoplasty

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10 weeks after surgery should usually have allowed for enough swelling resolution that you should be able to breathe at least reasonably well.  Your doctor should be able to take a good look in there now and see if there is anything anatomical blocking the nasal passages.  If you are not satisfied with their explanation, go see a local ENT surgeon for an independent exam.

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.