Visible Bumps Due to Cartilage Grafts?

I had rhinoplasty 7 wks ago (dorsal hump, over-projection, long and droopy nose). About 4th week post-op, I noticed bumps on both sides of my nose where septal cartilage placed for functional reasons ( I didn't have any breathing problems). These bumps have become more visible, Rt bump is more prominent, and made my nose wider in the middle. Do these bumps go down and less noticeable as healing continues? What are the options to make these bumps less noticeable? Do I need revision rhinoplasty?

Doctor Answers 9

Visible Bumps Due to Cartilage Grafts?

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Dear Monic,

Thank you for your question.  Cartilage grafts can cause bumps if the cartilage gets rotated or was present all along and covered by swelling.  This can be adjusted in 6 - 12 months after all the swelling is gone. 

Best wishes,

Pablo Prichard, MD

Phoenix Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 42 reviews

Visible bumps due to cartilage grafts?

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Hello, and sorry to hear about the bumps you are noticing following surgery. After 7 weeks, you are still healing. The bumps you noticed after 4 weeks may have been there all along but hidden by post-operative nasal swelling. An in-person exam and more knowledge on your procedure would be necessary to give you the most accurate advice, but it is likely the appearance of the bumps will improve since you are only 7 weeks post-op if they are not due to a structural abnormality that needs correction. Options to make the bumps less noticeable depends on what they are and what is causing them. The bumps may be cartilage from the grafts that were placed. These grafts can sometimes be noticeable if they are not placed properly or adequately surrounded by tissue, and thin nasal skin may add to their visibility. If this is the case, a touch up may be necessary. I would recommend communicating your concern to your surgeon, as they know the details of your surgery and will be able to provide you with advice. Ask them the following:

1) The type of grafts that were placed.
2) What measures were taken to keep them hidden during surgery and what may be done to correct the issue if the bumps are still visible further in the healing process.

I hope this helps, and good luck.

"Bumps after rhinoplasty

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You need to wait a year before having any revision.  If persistent at that time you may need them addressed.  Donald R. Nunn MD  Atlanta Plastic Surgeon.

Donald Nunn, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 51 reviews

You might need revision surgery for the bumps

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Dear patient,

Thanks for asking. I guess the bump wouldn’t disappear even if time goes by.
You’d better get bump removal surgery.
Removing bumps is easy and simple procedure.

Dr. Kwon Take Keun

Taek Keun Kwon, MD
South Korea Plastic Surgeon

Bumps/Graft Edges after Rhinoplasty

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By your description you are most likely feeling the edges of spreader grafts. You will need to give your nose a full 6 months to see if they persist. if so and they are visible, it may be necessary to either shave them down or remove them in a revisional rhinoplasty.

Bumps after rhinoplasty

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Without having more details about your surgery it is very difficult to say what the bumps are from. Could they be from spreader grafts..perhaps? Best to ask your surgeon.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Visible bumps after rhinoplasty surgery

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You are still early after your surgery to consider a revision. Most of the time we need to wait at least six months to a year to allow the nose to settle down after the first surgery.

If the irregularities are still present, they may be correctable by a small amount of filler, or by revision surgery.

Jamil Asaria, MD
Toronto Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 139 reviews

Rhinoplasty revision question

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Too early to judge the final result.  If at 9 -12 months post op you still have these problems then are vision may be a reasonable option. 

Jeffrey Zwiren, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

Visible Bumps After Rhinoplasty

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Hello Monic:

Without proper knowledge of precisely what was done intraoperatively it is not possible to answer definitively. However, from what little you've said here it might be that the tops of your spreader grafts are slightly higher than the rest of your nasal bridge (poking up just a little bit) and this will create such bumps. As the swelling goes down in the post surgical period these bumps will actually become more noticeable. My guess is that they will require some manipulation in the future. Sometimes it means surgery to move or reduce them but occasionally they can be improved by using a needle placed through the skin to shave the high points. since these bumps tend to become more prominent over time i would not necessarily wait too long before addressing them; perhaps after 3 months. 

Andrew S. Frankel, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon

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.