Can Diuretic Pills and Cold Sprays Relieve Rhinoplasty Swelling?

I came across some tablets called Aqua Ban that are intended for pre-menstrual water retention. They promise to get rid of excess fluids all over the body. What can such pills do for the nasal tip after surgery (I refer to the entire class of diuretics, not just the ones named above)? Also, there are some sprays that freeze the body when used and some claim to reduce swelling. Given that ice packs are too heavy to place on the nose soon after Rhinoplasty surgery and may deform it, can these sprays be used as alternatively? Thank you in advance.

Doctor Answers 4

I don't recommend these. Follow your surgeon's advice.

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Cold sprays applied to the nose, particularly after open rhinoplasty and especially after revision rhinoplasty, are a really bad idea. At best, they won't change the swelling much, but at worst, they carry a greatly increased risk of killing the skin at the nasal tip by further reducing the blood supply.

As for diuretics, this is also a big no-no immediately after surgery. The last thing a patient needs to be doing after rhinoplasty (or any cosmetic surgery...and most other surgeries), is taking medications that dehydrate the patient. It won't do much to alter post-op swelling, but it's a great way to damage the healing process. The body, especially the nose, needs fluids after surgery.

Your question also brings up an interesting point, which is to make sure that you run any other ideas like this past your surgeon before taking matters into your own hands. I've seen a handful of incidents with my own patients where they've severely compromised their healing by doing things on their own without checking with us first.

All the best,


Jacksonville Facial Plastic Surgeon

Reducing Rhinoplasty Swelling Through Diuretic Pills/Cold Sprays

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You should be cautions about taking medications, ointments and lotions
other than those directly prescribed by your surgeon. Your doctor knows
your condition best, and can thus best recommend what approach to take
should your nose job not be healing as planned. For the most part, however,
it is best to just allow your swelling to go down naturally. It understandable
that you are trying to quicken your recovery, but try to be as patient as
possible with this process in order to guarantee the best results.

Diuretics and Cold Sprays

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Avoid both of these products after your nasal surgery. Diuretics should not be taken casually because of their effect on electrolytes in your body. I don't want to be dramatic, but a potassium imbalance can interfer with heart contraction. Cold sprays would constrict blood vessels in skin with compromised circulation after the surgery. Please listen to your surgeon who probably has years of training and experience. It is wonderful that you plan to be a conscientious, but you probably will not reinvent he wheel.

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

Avoid duretics and cold sprays after rhinoplasty.

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Both of these products are a bad idea. You don't need them, and they are potentially dangerous.

After a gently performed rhinoplasty, swelling naturally fades. In New York, we tell our patients to keep their head elevated, to avoid any activity that makes the blood rush to the face (like bending down), and to apply cold for 48 hours. Some ice chips inside a rubber glove do not put excessive pressure on your new nose.

George J. Beraka, MD (retired)
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon

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.