Urgent! Smoking and Rhinoplasty. What Have I Done?

Hi, I have finished reading through some questions and answers re smoking and rhinoplasty! I started smoking 2 days after surgery and in definitive terms, I would like to know what exactly I may have done to the appearance of the nose as a result??!! It has been 2 weeks now and I am not smoking from this point onwards! But wanted to know what physical damage I may havr caused from smoking?? Please let me know if there are any warning signs I should be looking for??!! Thanks in advance

Doctor Answers 4

Smoking after rhinoplasty

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Thank you for the question. You should absolutely consult with your physician about your smoking habits in order to obtain the most reliable and individualized medical advice. Most specialists recommend abstaining from smoking for 2-3 weeks before a rhinoplasty, while others may insist on a full month or two. Smoking will cause irritation and restrict the blood flow to your healing areas, possibly causing complications during the recovery period.   

In addition, you should also make sure to avoid smoking for at least two weeks after surgery as it may interfere with your healing process. Smoking after surgery may restrict the flow of blood to the healing areas, exacerbate swelling, and prolong recovery. If you don't observe any increase in swelling or discomfort, your recovery is most likely proceeding normally. Just stay away from cigarettes, until the healing process is complete. Of course, as a physician, I would advise you to quit smoking altogether due to a variety of health risks associated with it. 

 An in-person exam with a board-certified plastic surgeon would be the best way to assess your needs and obtain expert medical advice. Best of luck!

Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 120 reviews

Smoking after Rhinoplasty

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   If the skin still looks viable and you have stopped smoking, you have likely done little damage.  You should not smoke for at least a year and preferably never again.  Kenneth Hughes, MD Los Angeles, CA

Smoking following rhinoplasty

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In general, you will want to avoid smoking at least 6 weeks before and 6 weeks after surgery. Nicotine itself is a vasoconstrictor. When vasoconstriction takes place, surface area inside the blood vessels decreases. This results in poor blood flow and a rise in blood pressure. In effect, healing is greatly compromised. I would highly recommend refraining from any additional smoking, as it can have a negative impact on your healing. I would recommend following up with your surgeon if you have any questions. I hope this helps, and I wish you the best of luck with the remainder of your recovery.

Paul S. Nassif, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 49 reviews

Urgent! Smoking and Rhinoplasty #nosejob

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So here is the deal. Smoking and plastic surgery just don't match. Nicotine gum, nicotine patches, or any nicotine containing product all cause the small arteries at the edges of a wound that is trying to heal to close down. You need good blood flow for tissues to heal. Smokers have 12x the increased wound healing complications compared to their non-smoker counterparts. You likely did not cause any harm, but if you continue to smoke you may affect your healing and the stability of the work you have had done. In a perfect world we want everyone to be nicotine free. More realistically you should quit at least 6 weeks prior to surgery and continue for at least 6 weeks post surgery.

Richard J. Brown, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 53 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.