What Could Be Causing Swollen Nose After Rhinoplasty?

My nose is still really swollen after 7 months. Could this be because of the cartilage the surgeon added? And will this go down? He also told me I had a lot of scar tissue.

Doctor Answers 5

Most of the obvious swelling should be gone after 6 months

I agree with what has been said. Most of the swelling should be gone after 6 months. However, it can take up to a year for all of the swelling to go away.

For example, swelling of the tip of the nose is known to take a long time to go down. It is not unusual for it take 12 months for swelling to improve in this area.

The other possibility is that it is not swelling, but residual cartilage or bone which is creating the "swollen" contour. Scar formation can also create this.

Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 34 reviews

Swelling takes along time to go away

Swelling in the nose can last a year or more. Be patient. On the other hand 'fullness' in the nose could be the cartilage grafts you mention. Your surgeon should be able to clarify what is going on. But still be patient. If it looks better than before surgery, watch and wait.

G. Gregory Gallico III, MD
Boston Plastic Surgeon
3.2 out of 5 stars 7 reviews

Most nasal swelling should dissipate 6 months after rhinoplasty.

Dear Janemc,

Feel free to post / email a photo demonstrating your concerns, and we'll all be able to give better advice.

In my experience, 90-95% of the swelling should be out of your nose by the 6 month mark. The remaining 5 to 10% can take up to a year to go away, but this tends not to be an eyesore for most patients.

Kenalog (triamcinolone) injections may be helpful for persistent, stubbron swelling. Discuss this with your surgeon, or get a second opinion.

I hope this helps, and best regards.

Eric M. Joseph, MD
West Orange Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 418 reviews

Swelling with Rhinoplasty can take a while to go down

Your skin has memory of its own especially if it has had previous surgery. The scar tissue from previous work can cause the skin to take on its own shape. But ultimately the cartilage that you have in there will dictate how the final shape will be. The work your surgeon does with the cartilage is the most important and your surgeon will know best how that will determine the ultimate appearance.

Swelling can take months and up to a year for the results to show more clearly. It is not out of the ordinary that you will continue to have changes up to two years after your procedure. Steroids after the surgery can help with swelling as well as bleeding precautions. Taping of the nose can have an impact as well and your own care of the procedure afterwards can be very important.

Philip Young, MD
Bellevue Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 84 reviews

Swelling is to be expected


Swelling after a rhinoplasty is very normal. Your swelling may ake a year or longer to completely resolve, depending upon how much was done and the thickness of your skin. If this was a secondary rhinoplasty, meaning that this was your second operation on the nose, the swelling will last even longer than it did the first time. Also, you may notice that the swelling in one part of your nose goes down before it does in other areas. I would speak to your surgeon about your particular situation, but remember to be patient. Good luck.

Nina S. Naidu, MD, FACS
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 13 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.