Nose Still So Swollen 4 Months Post Rhinoplasty

I had rhinoplasty surgery four months ago and my nose is still really swollen and stiff. Why is it still so swollen? Is something wrong? My nose is basically the same size or maybe even a little bigger than it was before the surgery.

Doctor Answers 15

Swelling after Nose Surgery

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Although swelling after rhinoplasty very slowly resolves, this resolution follows a curve such that most of the significant swelling resolves early.  This early rapid resolution of swelling which occurs during the first three months after the procedure is followed my many months of continued resolution of edema (swelling).  During this late period, in addition to diminished swelling, parts of the nose that were operated on contract somewhat from the formation of scar.  This scarring and contracture also affects the final result.  You should see the final shape of the nose by three months after your procedure, but the size continues to reduce slowly for many months.

San Diego Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 50 reviews

Rhinoplasty Healing Takes a Long Time

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Of all the cosmetic operative procedures performed, most wolkd agree that a rhinoplasty takes the longest to get the final result. Four months seems like a very long duration of time and you would hope to see some change from your preoperative appearence. If you had any dorsal deformaties (hump), you should see the change by this time frame. The nasal tip is different. This will take up to 12 months to see your final result. It is something that you cannot see change on a daily basis since it is such a slow process, but at this time frame (4 months) you are best to give it more time (one year). It is at this time that your surgeon can safely decide if something further needs to be done.

Scott R. Brundage, MD
Grand Rapids Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 27 reviews

Swelling 4 months after rhinoplasty

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It is very common to be swollen for a year after rhinoplasty.  The stiffness will lessen with time.  By all means, see your Rhinoplasty Surgeon and get checked out, but again swelling is normal and can last for a year.  One should not be too enthusiastic about going back for revision surgery too soon...

Jeffrey J. Roth, MD, FACS
Las Vegas Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Nose Still So Swollen 4 Months Post Rhinoplasty

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Nasal swelling can take a full year from the surgery to clear. But a before side view to compare the one postop is needed to answer. If you think you are looking the same now, than I doubt you will be happy after a full year, so seek other opinions for possible revision at 9 months postop. From MIAMI 

Swelling and stiffness four months after rhinoplasty

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It is discouraging to feel that there has been no change apparent in your nose after four months. Still you can be hopeful of a change. Depending on skin type it will take six to twelve months for complete softening of the bridge and tip. Unfortunately, there is nothing to do but wait it out and then judge the result.

Best of luck,


Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 44 reviews

Prolonged rhinoplasty swelling

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It is not uncommon to have swelling and stiffness to the tip of the nose that can last up to 6 months and even a year after rhinoplasty surgery depending upon how much surgery your nose has undergone. That being said, you might be building up scar tissue in that area and you should have your surgeon check to make sure that is not the case and he/she can treat it at this time.

Scott Trimas, MD
Jacksonville Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

Swollen 4 months after Rhinoplasty

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Hi, It sounds like and looks like you may have scar tissue or persistant swelling in the tip of your nose. At this point, you should definately see less swelling and an improvement of your nose since before surgery. You may want to talk to your surgeon or another surgeon about your issue. Best, Dr.S.

Oleh Slupchynskyj, MD, FACS
New York Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 285 reviews

What can you expect 4 months after Rhinoplasty

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Dear Sandiego

Thank you for uploading the picture.  The most difficult times after a rhinoplasty are the first week and then around this 3-6 month period.  The stiffness is very common and softens over the year.

  •  First and foremost, you have had a major nosel surgery less than 4 months ago. I know it is difficult, but I would advise that you give your nose a chance to heal.  You have put a lot of effort, time, recovery, money,into your rhinoplasty, but I think now is the time to let it heal. This can be hard.
  • The amount of swelling in your nostrils and around your bridge is started to diminish, but It is still too early   to tell how the nose will look after maturing.  
  • The healing and maturing of your nose structure will proceed for months.   
  • Stay in contact with your surgeon and let yourself heal.

Best Wishes

Travis T. Tollefson, MD, MPH
Sacramento Facial Plastic Surgeon

Nasal Swelling After Rhinoplasty

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Rhinoplasty is a surgery of millimeters and as a result even small amounts of swelling can be visible and significant. With time, this should subside and reveal a more refined and shaped nose. By four months, most of the swelling should be gone, but there is no question that the nose will continue to look better through your year anniversary. No real judgment should be made on another operation until this time has passed. You don't want to make operative decisions based on a swollen nose.

Keep in close contact with your doctor and be patient. If at a year you are still bothered by the appearance, see a board certified plastic surgeon with experience in revision rhinoplasty as this is a procedure even more complicated that the first time around.

Best of luck

Vincent Marin, MD, FACS

San Diego Plastic Surgeon

Vincent P. Marin, MD
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 52 reviews

Nasal swelling after rhinoplasty (nose job).

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After a rhinoplasty (nose surgery), the nasal skin will be significantly swollen.  It takes approximately 3 weeks for 30% of the swelling to subside and 6 weeks for 60% of the swelling to dissipate.  However, it may take up to a full year for all of the swelling to go away.  Thicker skinned patients may take even longer.  Patience is critical here and it's essential not to jump into a revision surgery too early.  

Etai Funk, MD
Houston Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 69 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.