Septorhinoplasty did not go as planned, looking for insight and clear answers.

I had an open septo-rhinoplasty 2 mo. ago. It was supposed to be a minor closed tip revision. Many things did not go as planned. I was told that my septum was, "fractured" and cartilage was also harvested from my ear. This was a primary rhinoplasty. I am beyond mortified! I did not have a deviated septum and I do not recall trauma to my nose. Under what conditions would this happen? What could really have gone wrong? I have been unable to get good clear answers. Honesty please :(

Doctor Answers 5


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First, it is difficult to understand how a planned closed tip plasty turned into an open septo rhinoplasty. Perhaps you didnt quite explain what the doctor told you, werent told everything you should have been told. Septal fracture/obstruction is not that difficult to diagnose before the surgery and can be planned for appropriately. Certainly, harvesting of ear cartilage is something that should be discussed prior to surgery as one of the possible things that might be used. At any rate, two months is still too early to say where you are but an open discussion/clarification with your surgeon is in order.

Sacramento Facial Plastic Surgeon

Septorhinoplasty didn't go as planned and would like honest answers.

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 I have performed Rhinoplasty for over 20 years and IMHO, your best course of action is to have a clear and honest discussion with your Rhinoplasty surgeon.  He/she is the only one, from any of us here, that performed your Rhinoplasty and knows why and how a closed tip-plasty turned into an open Septorhinoplasty with an ear graft.  Your Rhinoplasty surgeon went through a series of decision making steps during your Rhinoplasty and that's what you should ask to be shared with you at this time.

 We spend a significant time with all potentail patients in consultation discussing the surgical plan, be it a Rhinoplasty, Face Lift or Breast Augmentation so all reasonable scenarios in surgery are discussed and approved by myself and the patient before moving forward.  You may find, after this discussion with your surgeon, that the decisions made were logical and well thought out.  Hope this helps.

Francis R. Palmer, III, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 28 reviews

Deviations...from the surgical plan

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Most rhinoplasty surgeons can tell you prior to surgery if the nose will or will not require an open approach. However, unexpected findings do occur intra-operatively that may require a change in the operative plan. Don't be too critical of your surgeon.

Kevin Brenner, MD, FACS
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 23 reviews

Septal fracture

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Encountering an unexpected septal fracture is not all that uncommon. However, i don't see why that should prevent using your septal cartilage as a graf unless the just wasn't enough. Wait longer for the results and then decide if things are amiss/

David A. Bray, Sr., MD
Los Angeles Facial Plastic Surgeon

Septorhinoplasty what happened?

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People often have minor traumas in childhood that they are not aware of being significant that can affect the interior integrity of the septum. Also sometimes when a large hump is removed it uncovers a deviation not appreciated before or leaves a septum not strong enough to support the nose. There are a number of situations that could explain the change in operative plan without things "going wrong". I guess the question now is how is your result? If it is good then I would be happy my surgeon had a wealth of techniques he/she could draw on to solve the problems as they presented themselves and didn't accept a poor outcome.

Michael L. Schwartz, MD
West Palm Beach Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 12 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.