Visible Graft After Rhinoplasty

I had rhinoplasty abt 2 mnths ago &although there is still some swelling, there is a small bump sticking out on middle part of my nose where a cartilage graft was placed. To the touch it feels like edge of cartilage. Can I expect the bump to go down as healing continues(maybe that part is still be extra swollen?) or will a graft that has moved not change much anymore? How soon would you do a revision if graft has moved and leaves a visible bump? I won't see my suregon until 3 months post op.

Doctor Answers 12

Feeling a cartilage graft

If a cartilage graft has been placed over the top of the nose it is not uncommon to feel it and it may move slightly.  If you can see it then a revision is most likelyt required.  If you can only feel it then I would recommend leaving it alone and , if you are otherwise happy, be happy with your aesthetic result.


Tal Raine MD

Champaign Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

Visible graft after rhinoplasty


It is still soon after your procedure. It is important to discuss any concerns with your surgeon, as he/she knows the extent of your surgery and exactly what was performed. Swelling will last for 18-24 months following rhinoplasty. If it is a major concern, it would be best to seek your surgeon's advice sooner. I hope this helps answer your question. Thank you and best of luck to you.

Dr. Nassif

Paul S. Nassif, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 42 reviews

Palpable Cartilage Graft in Rhinoplasty

Often small pieces of cartilage are used in rhinoplasty for grafting. The cartilage is normally taken from the septum or ear, occasionally the rib. The cartilage is shaped and/or softened to help increase tip definition, narrow tip, fill concavities, support the tip, or other areas of the nose. When cartilage grafts are not available, then cosmetic surgeons may use nasal silicone implants.

Grafts may become palpable over time, once swelling subsides. The cartilage grafts itself may soften & contour itself gradually over time. However, 2 months is still very early to make a judgment on the rhinoplasty results. Typically, most plastic surgeons will meet their rhinoplasty patients frequently over time to help the healing process. Speak with your rhinoplasty surgeon soon rather than later if you have any concerns.

Houtan Chaboki, MD
Washington DC Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 68 reviews

Palpable grafts after rhinoplasty

A palpable graft at two months after rhinoplasty surgery may only get worse with time as the swelling dissipates. You should follow it carefully and then treat accordingly.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 23 reviews

Cartilage graft visible and palpable after rhinoplasty

Hi Annon, From your description, this appears to be a part of the graft that was used. You should not hurry back to the OR. It may reabsorb and soften significantly. Please bring it up to the attention of your surgeon and it can be corrected very easily if it is required.

Please see the article below that discusses these grafts in detail.

Sajjadian, Ali M.D., et al. Current Status of Grafts and Implants in Rhinoplasty: Part II. Homologous Grafts and Allogenic Implants Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery:
March 2010 - Volume 125 - Issue 3 - pp 99e-109e doi: 10.1097/PRS.0b013e3181cb662f


Good Luck

Ali Sajjadian, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 185 reviews

Visible cartilage grafts after rhinoplasty can need revision

There are two types of cartilage grafts used in rhinoplasty, visible grafts which give the nose shape, and invisible grafts which provide support to the nose. Of course, invisible grafts are never meant to show. Visible grafts used to define the tip, or to raise and shape the dorsum are of course meant to show. It is often possible to feel grafts in the tip and bridge of the nose, however the appearance should be smooth. Quite contrary to what has been said, we expect visible tip and bridge grafts to become more visible as the swelling is resolved and the skin become soft and supple, and the true nasal shape comes through. Cartilage grafts can shift and twist and revision is the answer to sorting out imperfections when they occur. If a bump is indeed sticking out and you can feel it through the skin, my bet is it will not go away, though miracles happen. We like to delay any revision for six months as by then we can clearly see any imperfection, and accurately correct it. Stay in touch with your surgeon.

Best of luck,


Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 38 reviews

Visible graft after rhinoplasty

Dr Mayer hit it on the head. WAIT! at least 6 months but go discuss with your chosen surgeon NOW! This allows you and the surgeon to keep open the lines of communication. From MIAMI Dr. B

Visible graft after rhinoplasty.

It is too soon to make any judgement about the nose. You should wait at least 6 -12 months. Discuss this with your surgeon at your next visit.

Toby Mayer, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Grafts and Rhinoplasty

At 2 months you can expect more swelling resolution for sure.

Grafts have a tendency to soften over time, so it is possible that the edge you are feeling will settle down as well.

It is also possible that the graft edge will become more visible after the surrounding skin swelling goes down.

You should wait at least 6-9 months. If there is a visible edge, that can usually be shaved down in the office with a needle under local.


Best of luck

Richard W. Westreich, MD
Manhattan Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 39 reviews

Grafts you can feel after rhinoplasty

Hi anon,

Talk to your surgeon at your 3 month visit to get an idea of what may be causing the palpable bump you are feeling. If the bump is small, and it is in fact a graft edge, you may see this soften with time as a bit of the grafted cartilage softens and resorbs. On the other hand, sometimes it can still be seen or felt through the skin as swelling continues to settle. In this case, it is usually not a big ordeal to fix it. Most surgeons would advise waiting at least 6 months or so to see in which direction you are headed. Talk to your surgeon.

All the best,

Jason Litner, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 44 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.