Almost 7 months post rhinoplasty - My tip and columella are still stiff. (photos)

Almost 7 months after rhinoplasty. Also, the right side (and nostril) looks more swollen than the left. Shall I expect a further improvement? thank you Doctors!

Doctor Answers 8

Its ok

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It is normal to have the nose feel "stiff" following rhinoplasty and this lasts about one year from your surgery date.  You need to wait and know that it will get softer.

Firmness after rhinoplasty

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It is common for the tip of the nose to feel "stiff" following rhinoplasty.  This can last approximately 1 year or more.  In addition, you may still have some swelling as it can take up to 12 months to completely resolve.  I recommend you wait until the 1 year point to evaluate final results. 

Nasal Stiffness After Rhinoplasty

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It is not unusual to have stiffness and swelling at the tip of the nose for a year after rhinoplasty. The sensations you are describing may be part of the healing process, or may be the result of what needed to be done to change the shape of your nose. The best person to ask is your surgeon.

Joseph Mele, MD
Walnut Creek Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Tip stiffness after rhinoplasty

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Thank you for your question and photos. It is not unusual for the tip to be stiff after a rhinoplasty. Depending on the technique used the stiffness may be long lasting. In some cases this is intentional and a good thing to keep your nose supported and strong. Discuss it with your surgeon for more information. Good luck

Jeffrey Jumaily, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

Recovering from rhinoplasty and evaluating your result

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Recovering from rhinoplasty is a healing process. Part of that process is waiting for swelling to go down to see your result.

In the first 6-8 weeks the majority of swelling will go down. Over the next 6-9 months you'll experience a downward trending rollercoaster of swelling going up and down depending on your exposure to heat, sun, or salt. At one year, you're close to your final result; however, the nose is known to continue healing and refining by very small amounts for years after that. Even at 7 months, you have a ways to go. 

The swelling commonly goes down in an uneven way. First one side and then the other goes down, which may give the appearance of a crooked nose until the other side catches up. The tip is the last area to settle down. It's important to follow your surgeon's instructions and keep your follow-up appointments so your surgeon can track your progress toward a safe and happy outcome. Safety comes first. 

Rhinoplasty healing past 7 months

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Thank you for the question and photos.  There is often still some swelling ever past 7 months following a rhinoplasty.  With that said, however, at 7 months most of the swelling should have subsided by now.  I don't think you will likely be seeing significant changes going forward rather more subtle changes associated with the remainder of the swelling going down.

Good luck with the rest of the rhinoplasty healing.

All the best,

Dr. Remus Repta

Remus Repta, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 170 reviews

Stiff tip and columella

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Without knowing what techniques were used, it is difficult to answer some questions. In general, the tip and columella will be much stiffer and harder than before surgery. This is because they are strengthened to properly position the tip.

Nose remains stiff for awhile

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Thanks for the great questions and the photos. It looks like you got a very nice result from your surgery. Your nose, just like anything else, forms scar tissue as it is healing, that's why your nose still feels stiff. Just like regular scars which take about a year to soften up, this is also true with the nose. Your surgeon may have also used pieces of cartilage in the nose to help support things, these too can cause the nose to feel stiff at first. Be patient and hang in there, this will typically get better with time. 

~Dr. Sieber

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.