Spreader Grafts Are Suddenly Swollen 14 Days Post-op, Any Ideas? (photo)

I'm 14 days post op (collapsed nasal valves corrected with spreader grafts using donor cartilage) and recovery had been stellar until yesterday. I woke up with highly swollen grafts, they're so large that they're mostly blocking my nostrils. They aren't overly painful or red (so I don't think it is infection) but they are huge. Had the same thing today, went into the ENT who performed and he said he'd never seen it before. It's strange that it would happen after two weeks of great recovery, any ideas?

Doctor Answers 3

Swelling after donor cartilage grafts

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Donor cartilage is not like your own tissue, more like an implant and can be prone to infection. If your swelling is rapid and unexpected, our guess is infection and you should see your surgeon right away.

Sudden Increase in Swelling after Two Weeks

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Any swelling that occurs, particularly quickly, after rhinoplasty should be concerning for infection. With donor cartilage (usually irradiated rib from cadaveric source), another concern could be that your tissue has had a reaction to the grafts.  In my opinion, a course of antibiotics is in order. If things don't improve, there may be a need to remove the material. Best of luck!

Swelling two weeks post-rhinoplasty

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I agree with my colleagues that this may be an infection or a reaction to the grafts. I would recommend a course of antibiotics. Steroids may also be considered to help reduce the swelling. Essentially, another visit to your surgeon is vital.

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