Septal Perforation and Stuffy Nose After Rhinoplasty?

I had Rhinoplasty on 5/8/09. I have a hole inside my nostril but it does not go through. Is this septal perforation? Will it heal on its own? What can i do to help it heal? Also, I feel as if I have a stuffy nose all the time now, is this normal?

Doctor Answers 8

Septal Perforation and stuffiness

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It is normal to have stuffiness for a while after rhinoplasty. However, the hole in your nostril which does not go through and through does not sound like a septal perforartion. A septal perforation is a hole in the nasal septum (the wall inside the nose which divides the nose into right and left halves) and it always is through and through. Nostril is the fleshy part of the end of your nose. A hole in the nostril from a rhinoplasty is very unusual. You should definitely see your surgeon and get evaluated.


Bedminster Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 126 reviews

Septal nonperforation?

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It is difficult to appreciate what you are describing without examining you.  If there is a hole that does not go through to your other nostril, then you do not have a septal perforation.  See your surgeon for a diagnosis and guidance as to how to enhance your healing.  Good luck!

Best first to visit your surgeon

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It's not abnormal to feel a bit congested for a few weeks after surgery but since you are describing a "hole" that "does not go through," I would recommend you make an appointment to see your surgeon as soon as possible. Based on your description, it does not sound like you have a septal perforation as the hole does not pierce the septal wall completely. At the same time it is important that you not go around poking inside as you may cause damage or create a problem. The best thing to do is see your surgeon for a thorough examination.

Peyman Solieman, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 3 reviews

See your surgeon!

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It is common to feel stuffiness one month after rhinoplasty. Rest assured. In addition, if you can feel a hole that does not go to the other side, then it is likely not a septal perforation. In either case, please see your surgeon and let them do a good examination and guide you. You should NOT be trying to look and feel inside your nose at this time. Good luck!

Sirish Maddali, MD
Portland Plastic Surgeon

Hole in nose

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If there is a hole( or possibly a tear in your nasal mucosa) and not a hole all the way through, then you do not have a septal perforation, You may have had a tear of the mucosa which usually heals on its own if it is small. Let your doctor evaluate it, and do not manipualte it in any way.  Good luck.

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

Rhinoplasty, What the Heck is the Hole in the Nostril, and Why the Stuffiness?

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Hi Chaos,

A septal perforation is a hole through the nasal septum (center divider of the nose between the nostrils). You should visit your rhinoplasty surgeon and point out your concern.

You should not be putting "things" into your nostrils (e.g. fingers) to know that you have a "hole that doesn't go through", nor should you be stretching you nostril to have a look inside. Speak to your surgeon about your stuffiness as well.

Good luck and be well.

Dr. P

Michael A. Persky, MD
Encino Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 39 reviews

You should visit your doctor

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 Your surgeon will know exactly what's going on by examining you.  This would be the best way to get some answers since none of us can really say anything without examining you.

A septal perforation could be easily diagnosed with a nasal examination.

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Without looking in your nose, it would be impossible to make this diagnosis. Septal perforations can happen with nasal-septal surgery. If they're small, you may notice a whistling sound when you breathe. If they're large, you may accumulate alot of crusting.

Certainly bring this to your surgeon's attention. You could also seek consultation from a board certified ENT.

Best regards.

Eric M. Joseph, MD
West Orange Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 435 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.