When to Stop Drinking Alcohol Prior to Surgery?

How many weeks or days do I have to stop drinking before my rhynoplasty?

Doctor Answers 38

When to Stop Drinking Alcohol Prior to Surgery?

         One to two weeks of alcohol avoidance around the time of surgery is prudent and reasonable.  Find a plastic surgeon with ELITE credentials who performs hundreds of rhinoplasties each year.  Then look at the plastic surgeon's website before and after photo galleries to get a sense of who can deliver the results.  Kenneth Hughes, MD Los Angeles, CA

Alcohol and rhinoplasty surgery

You should stop using anything that can increase the risk of excessive bleeding during and after surgery 1 to 2 weeks before surgery.  This includes:

1.  Most herbal supplements
2.  Fish oil
3.  Non steroidal anti inflammatory medications such as aspirin, ibuprofen (Advil Motrin).
4.  Vitamin E
5.  Foods:  Alcohol, garlic

What you can take to reduce bruising and bleeding before, 2 to 7 days before and after:
1.  Arnica oral
2.  Yunnan (Chinese herb)
3.  Bromalin
4.  Vitamin K

Ran Y. Rubinstein, MD
200 Stony Brook Court, Newburgh, New York

Board Certified Facial Plastic Surgeon (ABFPRS)
Fellow American Society forLaser Medicine & Surgery (ASLMS)
Clinical Professor New York Presbyterian Hospital
National Education Faculty (physician trainer) for:
Allergan (Botox, Juvederm, Voluma), Galderma (Scultpra, Restylane, Silk),
Cynosure (Cellulaze, Precision Laser Lift) & Solta (Fraxel, Thermage)
Zeltiq( CoolSculpting)

Ran Y. Rubinstein, MD
Manhattan Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 146 reviews

Alcohol and Rhinoplasty

After performing over 3500 Rhinoplasties I have found that stopping alcohol 5-7 days before and 7 days after is the safest for the day of surgery to minimize blood loss and speed up recovery afterwards.

Eric T. Adler, MD
San Juan Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 reviews

Alcohol abstinence

I recommend to patients to refrain from alcohol consumption completely 7 days prior to your surgery and 2 weeks postoperatively.  I also recommend refraining from all diet supplements, vitamins and homeopathic remedies unless expressly approved by me.  This is because most have unintended effects that can interact with anesthesia, and thin the blood.  I also recommend no NSAIDS, like aspirin, ibuprofen or aleve 2 weeks preop.   

Andrew Compton, MD
Troy Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1 review

Alcohol intake

Alcohol tends to cause some dehydration and also makes you more susceptible to the side effects of anaesthesia such as nausea and headaches. A glass of wine with dinner up to 2 nights before is fine but certainly heavy drinking should be avoided at least 2 weeks before

Andrew L. Greensmith, MBChB, FRACS
Melbourne Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 7 reviews

Alcohol before rhinoplasty

In general any facial surgery including rhinoplasty the consensus is 2 weeks prior the surgery to stop drinking.

Johnny Mao, MD, FACS
Orange Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Optimal Recovery advice

Prior to surgery, I advise you discontinue drinking, at minimum, 2 to 4 weeks prior to surgery for optimal recovery.

Richard A. Zoumalan, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

When to stop drinking alcohol before surgery?

I usually recommend that patients stop alcohol consumption for at least a week or two before and after their rhinoplasty surgery.  Alcohol can thin the blood and thereby increase your risk for bleeding and bruising; this is especially true of red wine.  I would recommend discussing alcohol consumption with your operating surgeon prior to your scheduled procedure as they may have different protocols that would be prudent to follow.

When to stop alcohol before surgery?

Very commonly asked question.  The truth no one knows.  Since this is elective surgery and you have the ability to do everything possible for a good outcome before its better to be safe than sorry.  I recommend no alcohol for 2 wks prior and 1 wk after.  Especially red wine as it thins out your blood

Hope that helps

Rady Rahban, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 77 reviews

Alcohol before surgery

Each Plastic Surgeon has their own view point on this and I would suggest you speak with your plastic surgeon. The reason that it is suggested that you stop or have minimal alcohol leading up to your surgery is that if can effect the metabolism (how fast the drugs last) of the anesthesia and pain medicines afterwards and can cause bleeding problems during surgery. Definitely do not drink and take pain medicines afterwards as it can cause you to stop breathing in certain circumstances.
My suggestions to my patients is to have no more than one glass of wine or beer per day 2 weeks before surgery and preferably stop a week prior to surgery, resuming after pain medicines have stopped and you are back to your normal routine.


Larry S. Nichter, MD, MS, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 104 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.