Too Flat and Short Nose After Rhinoplasty (photo)

My cast has come off and I'm now on day 10 after surgery. I've added some pictures as I'm very unhappy with my results. I now have a more flat and wider nose, which totally changes my face. I just wanted my tip reduced from the bottom, but was happy with the rest of my nose.

The doctor advised that he would have to do a full rhinoplasty to file the dorsum, even though I just wanted my tip done. I felt it was just my tip end (the bit the came down slightly) that needed reducing. I'm very unhappy and embarrassed to return to work in 3 days time. My nurse keeps saying I will get used to it, and it's probably just swelling.

If it is swelling, is there anything I can do to help the process along? Will it become sharper/narrower like it was before? Will my nostrils look smaller, as they are way too exposed (something I expressed I didn't want)? Will my larger nostril also come in line with the other? I have so many events/functions/weddings to go to in the next few months and I'm now upset and don't think I'll be able to go.

Doctor Answers 6

Healing after Rhinoplasty

Generally speaking, it can take 6 to 12 months to completely heal after surgery. Please keep in touch with your surgeon or his/her clinical team to discuss your ongoing concerns.

Melbourne Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 116 reviews

Too early to tell

In general, swelling after rhinoplasty takes months and months to fully resolve. You'll notice your nose is swollen at the moment. The initial swelling may disappear after 2 weeks, but that doesn't mean you still don't have any swelling right now. You should wait at least a year before considering revision rhinoplasty.

Jerome Edelstein, MD
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 176 reviews


It is too early to tell. The photos show some things but not others. What I can see is that yes the tip is up and sure the nostrils will show a bit more, but that should get better as the swelling goes down. Right now there is a lot of swelling which you have to be patient to allow to resolve.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 28 reviews

Unhappy with Rhinoplasty Results

Hi New Lady,

At this point patience is the best remedy for your unhappiness. The nasal tip and nostril show will drop some and decrease respectively with time. Your nostrils should even out with time. When your nasal tip is reduced, the rest of your nose should be proportionately reduced as well, otherwise the upper 2/3's of your nose would become the problem.

I empathize with your feelings. There is nothing to be done now for at least 6 to 12 months when the majority of swelling and healing will have resolved. If you are still displeased at that point then speak with your surgeon regarding possible revision surgery. In the photos that you have submitted, it appears that your nose is aesthetically pleasing to others, and that you need not avoid attending important events.

Your experience unfortunately underlines the importance of clear communication between patient and surgeon before rhinoplasty at the consultations, and even in the pre-op area on the day of surgery. I hope that your nose settles over time into one that you are happy with. Be well.

Dr. P

Michael A. Persky, MD
Encino Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 36 reviews

Nose is still very swollen

Only ten days after your rhinoplasty your nose is still very swollen and it is impossible to tell the full final result from your rhinoplasty surgery. It takes a year, and in some cases longer, to have full healing take effect. Swelling is probably making the nose look short and flat at this point. It is very important to get out to social events and to resume your social life no matter what the nose looks like. Others won’t see what you see. At the end of one year if the patient is still unhappy with the nose a revision rhinoplasty should be considered.

William Portuese, MD
Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 143 reviews

Rhinoplasty swelling

New Lady,

It is hard to tell from your photographs, but I think that your nose appears better proportioned than before. Early on, swelling can really alter the shape, especially of the tip and dorsum. I routinely have my patients tape their noses to control swelling. I also have some patients perform a routine "pinching" or squeezing of the dorsum to keep the nasal bones together and narrow. It is still too soon to tell, but my guess is that you will be happy with your nose after the swelling resolves.

Daniel Reichner, MD
Newport Beach Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 45 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.