So Far, So Good - Chicago, IL

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I remember how hard it was to find reliable...

I remember how hard it was to find reliable information on Dr. Shah during my preliminary research, so I hope this review can help others during such a critical and uncertain time. Where do I begin? I guess I could start with why I decided to change my nose. Somewhat wide and long with a little hump, it was never my favorite part about me. So when I got the opportunity to change it in time for my upcoming wedding, I took it! I met with two other plastic surgeons before deciding on Dr. Shah -- one in Chicago and another big shot doc in LA. Dr. Shah was the only one who took the time to really listen to my concerns, patiently answer endless my questions and discuss the procedure in such depth to ensure I was completely comfortable moving forward.

Over the course of THREE consultations, he scrutinized my nose meticulously and worked with me to generate multiple digital morphs. The time he took with me showed not only his attention to detail, but his commitment to his patients and achieving the best possible outcomes. After the third consultation, I was convinced this was the doctor for me and booked my surgery for open rhinoplasty on February 7th.

SURGERY - I underwent open rhinoplasty on February 7th. The surgery was originally expected to take no longer than 2 hours, but because my nose proved more deviated than anticipated, it went to 3 hours. POST-OP It's been 11 days since my surgery and 4 days since the split came off.

Here's a bit about my post-op experience thus far, starting with recovery. RECOVERY (DAYS 1-7) Like other patients, I'd say I felt more "uncomfortable" than in pain. Just like I had a really bad cold and a migraine. Day One was ok; I threw up while leaving the surgery center but fared well at home. Then, Day Two and Three came. Those were the worst. I just sat in my recliner falling in and out of consciousness while the swelling got worse and worse. I was breathing out of my parched mouth, sitting in darkness, not able to talk, go on the Internet or watch TV, just waiting for my boyfriend to bring me up an ice pack every 20 minutes. Because of the mouth breathing, I had a very tough time sleeping and would wake up every 40 minutes either needing to pee or feeling like my tongue was going to crack in half. I was miserable.

But from Day Four on, things got easier and easier. I got more self-sufficient, could start eating more normal foods and even started sleeping uninterrupted. RECOVERY TIPS: - Live in a recliner for the next week. This keeps your head above your heart, thus reducing any swelling. - Have a glass of water WITH A BENDY STRAW next to you at all times. Mouth breathing makes your throat extremely dry. - Have a helper with you for the first three days, as you most likely will not feel like moving. My boyfriend brought me all my food, walked me to and from the bathroom, and made sure I got my ice packs and medications on time. He's the best. - Try to take it easy and not to freak out about what your nose/incisions look like. It's so premature, it's not worth the worry. - Use frozen peas in a surgical glove as a cold pack - Have ChapStick or Aquaphor on you at all times - Be prepared to sleep in a recliner for a week. It sucks. -

Sustenance: tons of mashed potatoes, apple sauce, Jello, pasta without sauce, SHAMROCK SHAKES, and ... sliced turkey. Hey, you gotta get your protein somehow. - Girls, buy DRY SHAMPOO, because you're not going to be able to get your hair wet until the splint comes off 5-7 days later. - Use a Clarisonic to help wash your face around the splint SPLINT REMOVAL (DAY 7) Because I had an open rhinoplasty, the doctor needed to remove both the splint and the stitches on my septum. This wasn't exactly painless, but it was over in about 4 minutes. I still have a few dissolvable stitches inside my nose but should soon go away.

FIRST IMPRESSIONS When my new nose was unveiled, my initial reaction was a pretty standard one: "Holy crap, IT'S SO SWOLLEN!" I actually found it more funny than alarming; from the front, I looked like Cindy Lou Who! However, I knew this was a very early, undeveloped impression of what would later be a very different, more refined and defined nose. My profile view is gorgeous, however -- feminine, refined. The hump, though reduced, is still somewhat visible. I asked the doctor about this. He said the bump is only skin deep. The skin is so used to being draped over a hump, it takes some time for it to conform to the new straight bone. So once the swelling subsides, the "bump" will as well.

DAY 11 I'm currently on Day 11, and my nose has already started to de-swell. I can't say I'm 100% happy with the results just yet, but I can appreciate the overall shape, which is SO improved. My profile is amazing, and I can already see that once the skin begins to "shrink wrap" to the new underlying structure, my beautiful new nose will emerge. I will continue to keep you posted as my results mature! All in all, I have no regrets. When RealSelf asks me "Was is worth it?", I base my response not only on the cost of the surgery but the physically and emotionally rough recovery period thereafter. And despite it all, my answer is yes! To be able to live the rest of my life not worrying about how my nose looks in pictures, or trying to put my makeup on in just the right way to make it look smaller, or feeling self-conscious of my profile every time someone looks at me from the side, it is definitely worth it.

It's officially been 2 weeks since my surgery,...

It's officially been 2 weeks since my surgery, which seems like a good time to update my review.

So far, everything is progressing (albeit slowly). The tip of my nose is incredibly swollen, as expected, but apparently I'm the only one who really notices; I returned to work today with a ton of excuses at the ready: "I'm just well-rested." "I have a cold." "I cut my hair." "My hair grew." But I never had to use them! No one said a word. No one gave a suspicious glance. I felt like I was on The Truman Show.

I still have verrrry slight, stubborn bruising on my upper eyelids, but it should be gone by the end of the week. In the meantime, I can easily cover it up with concealer.

Happy anniversary to me and my nose! I can't...

Happy anniversary to me and my nose! I can't believe it's been one month already. When I went in for my two week follow-up, the doctor told me I was still extremely swollen -- much more swollen than he'd expected. He said at two weeks, I was where he expected I'd have been at one week. Slow healer, I guess.

I just went in for my ONE MONTH follow-up tonight, and since my tip swelling still hadn't progressed very much, Dr. Shah gave my nose a kenalog injection (a steroid) to encourage the swelling to come down a bit. It suppresses growth factors (or some medical jargon like that) and slows collagen production. He said according to his past patients, it could take anywhere from 2 hours to 2 weeks to take effect. So I'm hoping for something less bulbous soon :) It didn't hurt too badly; just a pinch, similar to the feeling of getting your stitches out.

Nonetheless, I'm still very happy with my results. The frontal view still needs some time to deswell, but the profile views are SO CUTE. I'll post some updated pictures soon!

It's been 1.5 months since my surgery and about...

It's been 1.5 months since my surgery and about two weeks since my kenalog injection. Swelling went down dramatically 48 hours after the injection, which was exciting, because I could finally start to see indication of the "beautiful, refined nose" Dr. Shah kept telling me about. It was just hiding under all that swelling! I still have quite a long way to go, and I'm still very swollen. But it's nonetheless reassuring to see some marked progress. Can't wait to share my results at 2 months!!

I'm baaaack! It's now been a little over 3 months...

I'm baaaack! It's now been a little over 3 months since my last update, and very subtle but important changes have occurred. The bridge bones have become less swollen and pronounced, but I can still tell my nasal skin has some "shrink wrapping" to do. If I simply pull my nose skin taut (which I do in the mirror obsessively, lol), my nose looks perfect -- exactly like the nose I always envisioned for myself. It's like the residual bridge swelling vanishes before my eyes, as does the pseudo bump that is slowwwwly going away. I can't wait until this extra skin shrinks down so my nose looks like this all the time!! As for the tip, it is still very swollen, hard and stiff, but the doctor assures me this will soften up over the next several months. At my 3-month check-up, he told me if my tip doesn't shrink down to a more satisfactory level by mid-June, he will administer another round of the kenalog. I also complained that the area behind to the sides of my nostrils (what I learned are called "turbinates") could be a little bothersome from time to time, and the doctor took a look and revealed they're a little bit swollen and purple. Weird. He put me on an antihistamine nasal spray called Astepro for a short time to help alleviate those symptoms. On a related note, I'm continually impressed by the ongoing care and dedication of my surgeon. It goes long beyond the operating room, and he is truly committed to happy patients and optimal results from beginning to end. LOVE Dr. Shah.

Backing up: at the two month mark, I also finally resumed my normal workout routine! Originally, I was afraid that working out would cause my swelling to flare up even more, but that concern turned out to be unfounded. Working out doesn't affect my nose one way or another.

I've updated my review with new pictures -- because, let's be honest, that's all anyone really cares about anyway ;) I've noticed it's super helpful when other reviewers include side-by-side photographic comparisons of the progression of their noses, so I've done the same! You can a timeline of my nose: before and at different stages in my recovery, up until Day

Hahaha, uhhhh, I can't really think of any other details to include. If anyone has any specific questions that I haven't yet addressed, PLEASE feel free to ask in the comments section below!!! After all, that's what this review is here for.

All in all, I'm extremely pleased and have no regrets! I just love my new nose; it feels like the nose I was meant to have all along.

It's been 7 months since my surgery, and my, how...

It's been 7 months since my surgery, and my, how time has flown!! Just decided to update my review to let everyone know how I'm doing.

I know most doctors tell you you'll see your final results by Month 3, but for me, I really became pleased with how things were shaping up around Month 4. Up until that point, I still had some nagging concerns: would the residual bump subside? would the bridge swelling go down, or would my nose look like edamame for the rest of my life? etc etc. These questions seem silly to me now, as I now know I simply needed more time to heal. But hindsight is 20/20.

Dr. Shah was wonderful throughout the entire process. He scheduled regular check-ups every month, and at each appointment, he meticulously scrutinized my progress. He was intently committed to my results as if I was his only patient. Even more astounding, the follow-up appointments are all included in the cost of the surgery. I really couldn't believe how much I got for the price I paid. Actually, when I was first consulting, I saw the price as a red flag. "How come he isn't asking for $8,000 like everyone else?" I asked his office assistant. Haha, this actually concerned me! But now I know he's the real deal: a talented surgeon and a great person who is more interested with changing his patients' lives than getting even richer at their expense.

I just got married a month ago, and looking at our pictures, I know I would have felt much differently about my wedding photos had I not had the surgery. I am absolutely in love with my new nose and SO glad I finally decided to do something about my (literally) biggest insecurity.
Chicago Facial Plastic Surgeon

I met with two other plastic surgeons before deciding on Dr. Shah. As a facial plastic surgery specialist who has done over a thousand rhinoplasties, Dr. Shah was the only one who took the time to really listen to my concerns, patiently answer endless my questions and discuss the procedure in such depth to ensure I was completely comfortable moving forward. Over the course of THREE consultations, he scrutinized my nose meticulously and worked with me to generate multiple digital morphs. The time he took with me showed not only his attention to detail, but his commitment to his patients and achieving the best possible outcomes. He demonstrated this meticulousness in surgery; when my nose proved a bit more deviated than expected, Dr. Shah took a full hour extra to work with it until he was satisfied. I can't wait to see how his perfectionism pays off in the next few months as my new nose emerges from the swelling. It's gonna be SHAH-MAZING! SHAH-LLELUJAH!

5 out of 5 stars Overall rating
4 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
5 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
5 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
5 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
5 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
5 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
5 out of 5 stars Payment process
4 out of 5 stars Wait times
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