Can I Have Rhinoplasty?

I'm a 34 y.o. and completely healthy. No pre-existing conditions, I exercise 4-5 times per week, and live a healthy lifestyle (occasional drink, non-smoker). I have had a physical in the last 5 years, with no remarkable findings. I began looking into rhinoplastly recently. However, I did use cocaine occasionally when I was in my twenties. As mentioned, I have zero physical problems, but wanted to confirm I would still be a viable candidate for rhinoplasty considering this info. Thank you.

Doctor Answers 10

Can I Have Rhinoplasty?

 The issue with intra-nasal drug use is that continued use can and does decrease the blood supply to the nasal tissues inside the nose.  This promotes tissue destruction that exposes septal cartilage creating a septal perforation and ultimately lack of nasal bridge support.  If you have not continued use, nor have a current septal perforation from that standpoint there would not be any contraindication for you to undego Rhinoplasty.  

 You should however have a thorough exam, including checking the septum, diuring your Rhinoplasty Consultation.  be sure to select a Rhinoplasty Surgeon that understands and follows the proper aesthetics of facial (and nasal) beauty for the creation of a naturally more attractive nose and face.  Hope this helps.

Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 25 reviews

Rhinoplasty candidates

Yes you would be a candidate now that you have stopped using cocaine and are healthy. This makes a big difference in the way the nose responds to the surgery-even occasional use, so it is great that you stopped and are interested in having rhinoplasty. I would suggest you have a consultation with a board certified plastic surgeon to discuss your options and desired results.

W. John Bull, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.4 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

Yes, It's Possible: Rhinoplasty after Cocaine Use

First, I want to congratulate you on your choice to live a healthier, drug-free lifestyle. Yes, you may likely be a good candidate for Rhinoplasty, but it would require a qualified Facial Plastic Surgeon’s evaluation. We would discuss Rhinoplasty options and do an evaluation of the septum to determine if it was affected by cocaine use. You may need a septoplasty if a septal perforation or hole in the septum occurred. Keep up the great choices.

James Chan, MD
Portland Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 58 reviews

Can I Have Rhinoplasty? #nosesurgery

From your history I do not see any reason why you can not have a Rhinoplasty. You obviously can not be active with your cocaine use. You could have structural damage from your past use depending on how much and how often you used cocaine. Mainly patients get septal perforations and those are very difficult to fix. You would need a thorough examination by a board certified surgeon who specializes in Rhinoplasty procedures. Make sure you develop a close personal relationship with your surgeon and their staff because these operations are tedious and require lots of special attention and expertise. Trust is a must!!

Richard J. Brown, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 49 reviews


Recreational use of cocaine in the past can impact rhinoplasty in the present even if you did not take enough to cause perforation of the septum. I have had patients who snorted cocaine in their teens or twenties and had rhinoplasty 10 or 20 years after stopping occasional use of cocaine. Some of those patients did not tell me about the history of cocaine use and I could not do the surgery as planned. They had thinned and scarred mucosa covering the septum so I could not do the full septoplasty for fear of shredding the mucosa and ending up with septal perforations. After surgery they admitted to it when I asked them about it. Make sure you inform your surgeon of this before surgery so he/she can appropriately plan out the surgery. The better your surgeon knows your medical history before surgery the greater chance you have of a satisfactory surgical outcome.

My response to your question/post does not represent formal medical advice or constitute a doctor patient relationship. You need to consult with i.e. personally see a board certified plastic surgeon in order to receive a formal evaluation and develop a doctor patient relationship.

Aaron Stone, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 2 reviews

Rhino Request

Yes, come on in for an evaluation!  We Cosmetic Surgeons love our "healthy" and "honest" patients.  The past coke is all behind you now (so long as there is no septal perforation).

Robert Shumway, MD
San Diego Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

Rhinoplasty and prior cocaine us

You should have no problem unless you would have a large perforation in your septum which I doubt if this was only occasional use. 

Toby Mayer, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 34 reviews

Good candidates for rhinoplasty

Good candidates for rhinoplasty are is good health, with definable goals which the procedure will meet. In other words, the outcome should be achievable, and the expectation realistic. Cocaine use can damage the septum because of the vasoconstrictive effect of the drug, but past use will not disqualify you from a well planned procedure.

Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 43 reviews

Cocaine and rhinoplasty

Use of cocaine in the past does not impact wether one is a candidate for rhinoplasty or not.

There are three associations of cocaine with rhinoplasty:

1- Some surgeons use topical cocaine to cause vasoconstiction during surgery. Many have gone to using Afrin instead.

2- There are some reports of death on patients who use cocaine concomitantly with their rhinoplasty, secondary to cardiac arrhythmias.

3- Chronic cocaine in the nose causes septal perforation.

None of that applies to you.

M. Vincent Makhlouf, MD, FACS
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 11 reviews

Candidacy For Rhinoplasty


Based on your post I do not see a reason why you may not be a candidate for a rhinoplasty if your exhibit nasal irregularities.

As for the cocaine consumptions in your twenties, a thorough examination of your septal walls is essential to determine if any perforations did take place.

So, without an in-person evaluation it is not possible to provide you with definitive solutions.

That being said, please remember that commendable results require an exceptionally skilled surgeon to perform the surgery and settling for anything less than that increases the chances of additional corrective surgeries dramatically.

I hope this helps and please feel free to check the website below.

Thank you for your inquiry.
The best of luck to you.

Dr. Sajjadian

Ali Sajjadian, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 196 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.