Can Wearing a Splint over Nose Longer Than a Week Help Rhinoplasty Results?

I am going in for Rhinoplasty and I am concerned about the cartilage in the nose shifting back to where it was after being broken. can wearing a splint longer than a week help reduce the chances of it shifting back?

Doctor Answers 12

Splinting after rhinoplasty

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 I have my patients continue to wear external nasal splints at night for several weeks.   While it is not likely to help with shaping after a week or so, it can help prevent direct pressure on the nose from a pillow or a loved one during sleep, when the bones and cartilages may still be vulnerable to external trauma.

How Long Should Nasal Splint Be Worn After Rhinoplasty?

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Hi Ray,

Nasal splints are usually removed 5 to 7 days after rhinoplasty. I have my patients keep their splint. For the next two weeks I advise them to lightly tape the spint to their nose just to remind them to not bang their nose dring the night, and protect it from unruly sleep partners. By about 18 days the nasal bones are stable. As others here have commented, it is the rhinoplasty surgery that determines your result, not the splint. Wearing the splint constantly beyond 7 days is protective but will not effect your outcome.

Good luck, be well, and enjoy your new nose.

Dr. P

Michael A. Persky, MD
Encino Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 39 reviews

Don't use the nasal splint beyond a week

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The firm nasal splint we use after surgery has little value.  The tape component does apply gentle compression to the soft tissue, in order to limit the initial swelling and give it early support.  The firm metal or moldable plastic part protects the upper third of the nose (cartilage and bone), and serves as a reminder to the patient to be careful.  It really does not have much to do with the shape of the nose.

Prolonged use of the splint adds no value.  Compression is no longer necessary for swelling reasons, and the nasal bone and cartilage are already relatively stable after the first 7-10 days.  For that reason, the trend has been for shorter duration splinting, and even no external splint in some reports.

I often employ what I tell my patients are called "nasal exercises" that help to control the final surgical result.  After the first week post op, I will demonstrate pressure points or contours that I want them to address with these maneuvers.  In my opinion, it keeps the patients invested in their final result, and helps to improve the shape and position of the subtle irregularities during healing.  This can only be done if we get the splint off at a week. 

Kevin Robertson, MD
Madison Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 15 reviews

Nasal splints helps to control swelling and protect the nasal bones

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Using nasal splints after rhinoplasty mainly protects the nose from trauma and shifting during the first 5 to 7 days after surgery. Wearing a splint longer hasn't been shown to make any difference in the healing. The splint also helps keep some of the swelling out of the nose. Sometimes we re-tape the nose for a week or two to "control" further swelling. There haven't been any scientific studies to demonstrate that this makes a difference, its just something we have been taught to do. Splints also keep patients fingers OFF the nose during the first week when things are most delicate and mobile.

Steven J. Pearlman, MD
New York Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 141 reviews

Nasal Splints after Surgery

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It’s not unusual for plastic surgeons to use nasal splints following rhinoplasty surgery. Nasal splints help stabilize the nasal bones and also minimize nasal swelling. There usually left in place for about a week following surgery. At this point the nasal bones have stabilized and nasal splints have achieved their usefulness.

                Nasal splints may help minimize swelling in the immediate post-operative period, but splints have minimal effect upon swelling after one week. For these reasons, the use of nasal splints offers no significant advantages for rhinoplasty patients after seven to ten days following surgery. 

Prolonged nasal splint wear doesn't help

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There is no benefit or need to wear the nasal splint longer than a week after your rhinoplasty. Nasal splints are removed six days after rhinoplasty in our office.

William Portuese, MD
Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 157 reviews

Only need to wear the splint for 6-7 days.

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Wearing it longer will not give you anything better. The surgery is the important thing in changing your nose, not wearing the splint longer than a week 

Toby Mayer, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 38 reviews

Nose Splint Can Be Worn for A Long Time

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It is helpful to wear the splint for up to 3 weeks after. That is the typical time that most tissues have accomplished 80%of the healing. However, after the first 5 days it is important to remove the splint to see if the nose is healing in the right place. After that we usually discard the splint but you can keep it and wear it either continuously or at night before going to bed.


Tanveer Janjua, MD
Bedminster Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 126 reviews

Nasal splint use after rhinoplasty

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The nasal splint is meant to help stabilize the nasal bones during that first week.  It really doesn't do too much for the cartilage, so wearing the splint longer won't be helpful in this regard.  Good luck, /nsn.

A splint to help rhinoplasty results

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No. In actuality and in my experience, a well performed rhinoplasty with good osteotomies should not even require a splint to stabilize and secure the nasal bones or cartilage in place.

However, I do place a splint for 4 to 7 days (most cases five days) for two main reasons: 1) the gentle pressure tends to reduce soft tissue swelling faster 2) the splint acts as a reminder to the patient to be careful and avoid inadvertent nasal trauma. On rare occasions, patients, against my advice, have removed their own splint and tape dressings on the first or second postoperative day (probably to see how the nose looks). I have never seen this self removal of the splint and dressings negatively alter the nasal bones or cartilage alignment.

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.