Rhinoplasty success! Dr. Portuese - Seattle, WA

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I’ve been searching this website for a couple...

I’ve been searching this website for a couple months now and decided to start sharing my own experience. I am a 33 year old mom of a 5 year old and a 2 year old. I became self conscious about my nose starting in about 5th grade when I got my first “witch nose” comment. The level of self consciousness has gone up and down over the years but I think right now I am actually more comfortable with myself than I have ever been before. That doesn’t mean I like my nose though! I don’t think about my nose on a daily basis (at least until I started researching, now all I see on people are noses ha!), however when I talk to someone about it like my husband or a family member I find myself getting very emotional. We will be moving sometime in the beginning of next year and I have decided I would love to show up with a new nose!

First consultation was a no go

I currently live in North Dakota and was figuring I would have to travel a long distance for this procedure. I was excited to see that there was actually a "Top Doctor" within a couple hours from me so in trying to keep up with the momentum of my decision I contacted him for a consultation. Surprisingly they were able to get me in within a couple days. They were advertising a free consultation during the month of July on Facebook and advertised a free consultation on this website so luckily I did not have to pay. The office manager who smelled like cigarette smoke took me to the room since apparently the nurse was busy and there I waited for almost an hour before seeing the surgeon. While I was waiting I peeked my head out and asked the lady at the front desk if there was some kind of book of before and afters I could look at. She was like well I think so let me as someone else as if it wasn’t a routine request. The office manager came back with a sloppy looking 3 ring binder with only 3 patients in it and said these are the people who gave permission to show the photos. The photos were what I had already seen online and they weren't even arranged so that you could compare them side by side you had to flip pages. Some of them were zoomed in, some zoomed out so it was just overall unprofessional looking I thought for someone who supposedly has performed hundreds of rhinoplasties. I also thought that the final outcomes of those and a couple more I saw online looked too upturned. So anyway Dr. A came in and he was very nice and very confident in his abilities but didn’t really ask about me or what I wanted it was more of “we can fix that.” I told him my concern about an upturned nose and he said it WOULD be pushed up a little. He gave me a mirror and pushed up the end of my nose really slightly but to me it seemed like a huge difference in amount of nostril showing. He told me it would look better that way. I don't know if I'm over-focused on nostrils or if he just has a different aesthetic than me. I asked if he had more before and afters and he said just what was on his Instagram. He said that I can’t look at other people’s noses and expect mine to come out that way because I don’t have their nose to start with. Hmmm. I can see that logic somewhat but I think I can definitely get an idea of his work by looking at other before and afters. Seemed like a red flag to me. So anyway he took some 3D photos of me and told me he would email me with images of what it may look like after surgery. 2 weeks later I hadn’t received anything so emailed to ask about it. She said he hadn’t done it yet and would remind him. A month later I still have received no pictures. A definite no-go for more than one reason!

Next consultation scheduled

So because of my location I have no choice but to travel for this procedure. For logistics I narrowed it down to looking at surgeons in Minneapolis (long drive but do-able) or Spokane or Seattle (still would have to drive but I have family in Washington which helps a lot whereas no family here!). I don't know who I would go to in Minneapolis but in Seattle I would like to check out Dr. Portuese. On a whim I went outside of that and scheduled a consultation with Dr. Wayne in Oklahoma City. I have only been able to find good things about him so I figured what the heck. So I can't believe I am actually doing it but I'm flying there for an appt on Sept 18 and coming back the next day. Honestly I am SUPER excited to be in a hotel room by myself and get a full nights sleep without kids waking me up at all hours of the night! =D

Consultation went well!

A few days ago I flew to Oklahoma City to consult with Dr Ivan Wayne. It went well! I like that he is an ENT and specializes in faces and noses. I know all around plastic surgeons can be great too but I am pretty set on wanting one who is focused on faces. Dr Wayne has great credentials, great reviews/reputation, and was easy to talk to. I like that I can’t find any stories of bad rhinoplasty outcomes from him online. The office was clean and professional looking. First they took some photos of my face. Then I sat down with him and he talked about what he could do with my nose and showed me computer images of what it might look like. Apparently I have very thin skin on my nose and he said he would be taking some fascia from behind my ear to make sure there was a smooth appearance and everything was anchored (I think that’s the way he said it anyway). He answered all of my questions and didn’t make me feel rushed in any way. He talked about the best rhinoplasties being the ones where no one guesses and where it blends naturally with your face. My only disappointment was that there weren’t any additional before and after photos to view, only the ones I had already seen online. I would feel comfortable scheduling surgery with Dr Wayne but I need to figure out logistics of traveling, kids etc first. Also I think I may try to do a virtual consultation with Dr Portuese; Seattle would probably be a lot easier than Oklahoma City for my recovery being closer to family. I love that Dr P has hundreds of photos posted and keeps adding more. I think I have ruled out going to Minneapolis but that could change. Anyway back to my trip – funny story! I took a taxi from the airport to my hotel and my taxi driver asked what I was visiting for. I randomly told him I was there to see a plastic surgeon about my nose and he said Oh! My daughter had her nose done last year and it looks great! He told me she went to Dr. Panchal in Oklahoma City and highly recommended him. Said the swelling was there for a solid 6 months but she has very happy with it. He gave me all kids of advice and was really sweet! Anyway it was a worthwhile trip and I’m hoping to keep the ball rolling on this! :)

Surgery scheduled!!

Ahh I can't believe it but I scheduled surgery today with Dr. Portuese in Seattle! It will be November 5! Last week I spent tons of time researching online and still kept going back to his profile. Lots of before and after photos of noses similar to mine and all had a nice front view, which is what I am most worried about. Specialized in facial plastic surgery. Lots of great reviews. Seattle is also where I would prefer to do this. I had emailed photos to their office over the weekend and the patient care coordinator called me today. I was planning to be a "fly in" patient but they actually had Nov 5th open when I am already going to be in Washington for 2 weeks staying with my parents! It seemed meant to be! I feel relieved to have the decision made :)

Had telphone pre-op consult

Yesterday I had a telephone pre-op "appointment" with a nurse from Dr. Portuese's office. Basically she went over my medical history and gave me some instructions for my surgery which is now only 3 weeks away! They also collected payment so it's on for sure! Here is a before image I had emailed to them previously and a computer generated after photo they sent me as a potential outcome. We haven't gone over imaging any further than that yet; I will have an in person consultation with Dr. Portuese the day before surgery where we will take better photographs, discuss my wishes for profile and front and do more imaging.

Surgery tomorrow!!

In Seattle with my mom, staying at a nearby hotel tonight and tomorrow night. I finally met Dr Portuese today and my consultation couldn't have gone better! Tomorrow he will perform closed rhinoplasty to remove the dorsal hump. We mutually agreed not to mess with the tip of my nose. All of the staff I interacted with were great. Janet was particularly reassuring and helpful with explaining what to expect tomorrow and the next few months. I came away with a great feeling! Now I have applied my TransdermScop patch (to help prevent nausea from the anesthesia) and am going to bed!

5 hours post op

I checked in at 9:15 and had surgery at around 10. One minute they put in the IV and the next minute it was over! The worst part so far was coming out of anesthesia. I was trembling and my face felt like there was a lot of pressure on it. I rated my pain 5-7. They gave me more IV pain meds and it felt more like 4. The nurse helped me break up a couple crackers to eat and I had some sips of water. I took 2 tabs of my hydrocodone/acetaminophen and they wheeled me down to the car. At the hotel Mom helped me get settled upright in bed with a neck pillow. My nose felt completely blocked but 3 hours later I could start to breathe through it. I still have gauze underneath and it is still dripping quite a bit of blood. Changing the gauze every once in a while. I have not had any nausea yet and was able to drink a milkshake! Right now I have a mild headache but my nose doesn't hurt. Going to try to stay on top of the pain medicine though at least through tomorrow. Have been watching tv but going to try to nap :)

11 hours post op

My eyes are SO bruised now, way worse than my last photo! I'll take another in the morning. All in all the rest of the day was pretty easy! I have not been in any pain at all since the car ride and even then it was mild. Just chilling in the hotel bed surfing the net and watching tv. I was able to eat some chicken noodle soup for dinner. Had a couple sweet potato fries too but stopped since I couldn't really taste them plus figured I didn't need the salt. The biggest pain of the day has been changing the gauze under my nose and I haven't had much luck sleeping. Right now I just feel like I have a bad cold and would really like to blow my nose!

Day 2

Looking really rough but feeling okay! I was able to ditch the gauze this morning. Not much sleep last night because my mouth was so dry. Biotene mouth spray helped a little. Stopped the hydrocodone and just went with 2 extra strength Tylenol this morning and pain is fine just a dull headache and face feels puffy of course. In the car driving 4.5 hours to other side of state to my parents house. Can't breathe well through my nose since it fills like it may be full of dried blood. Just supposed to leave it alone for now. Bump is gone!!!

Day 3

Black eyes got so much worse! I hope this is the peak of it. Woke up this morning with face swollen and throbbing a bit. Ate some oatmeal and went ahead and took 2 pain pills. Yesterday I tried to prepare my kids for how I would look and so far they keep staring at me but are taking it ok. I am kind of glad it looks sore so they know to be careful with me! Currently just trying to take it easy :)

Day 4

Turned 34 today! Can't wait to be able to enjoy my new nose! I woke up this morning with lovely purple eyelids and chipmunk cheeks. One side of my face and one nostril is more swollen than the other side. It was a fairly uncomfortable day since I wanted to be up doing stuff but my body told me no. Too much movement = pressure and some throbbing on my face. Mostly I just stuck to the recliner and was fine though. There were a couple times when my kids were needy that I was happy to have my husband and parents around to help me with them. I took a bath this evening and was able to carefully tip back to wash my hair. Feels great to be clean!

Day 6

On the way back to Seattle with my husband. Splint comes off tomorrow morning! I tried to cover up my bruising today but didn't do that great of a job. Nose is really tender so I'm kind of nervous about having it exposed and vulnerable with the splint off! Excited to see it though!!

Splint off!

So relieved! Super swollen but I think I am going to love it! Will post more later

Day 8

Well I intended to put some makeup on and take photos but it didn't happen. Now I am on the road driving home from Washington to North Dakota with my husband and kids. Still very tender and some congestion but feeling much better overall. Getting the splint off yesterday was a little rough. I didn't get the memo to shower and get the bandage wet before coming so the nurse (who was great) had to work a little to get it off. It was a little painful and having him messing with it made me really woozy. I almost passed out! Got pale and felt like I was going to pass out so I had to put my legs up and put cold washcloth on my head. Yay! It was a relief to have it off though! Can breathe so much better. Now to get home.

Day 10

Really happy with my nose this morning! Of course it helps to have my bruises covered up. It is still really swollen but I feel like it looks more normal today. I'm still pretty uncomfortable sleeping because no matter what position I'm in I still feel like it puts pressure on my nose to lean on a pillow. I'm taking Tylenol still when I need it, mostly after I've been moving around a lot. Today was the first day I could put lotion on my face (gently) without wincing. Progress!

2 weeks

Yesterday and today I feel like I can go about my daily activities much more normally. There's particularly an improvement in being able to bend over and pick things up. Since my husband is back to work I've had to be more hands on with the kids and am just trying to stay vigilant about getting whacked. I took my son to preschool today and ran some errands without any problems. My nose is still very sore to the touch. I can stand with my face in the shower spray without it hurting now but have to be very gentle washing. The swelling and feeling changes throughout the day. Sometimes I don't feel it much, sometimes it tingles, sometimes it aches. The tip still feels a little numb. The swelling is bad right between my eyes. I still feel like I can't smile quite normally. One side of my nose is more swollen than the other side. Covering the bruising with makeup has been harder than I thought. Lots and lots of layers and it still shows. Hopefully it will be gone soon!

2 week before/after

2 week before/after other side

4 weeks post op

Surgery is starting to feel like forever ago! My nose still feels funny to the touch, a little numb/tingly and still a little sore on the bridge but overall so much better. I feel far less fragile now - I even shoveled snow yesterday! My bruises are gone, just kind of a dark shadow left. I'm finally sleeping more comfortably laying on my side with a fluffy pillow. Congestion still comes and goes. I still have swelling right between my eyes and it feels hard there. I also have a bit of a raised spot just under the corner of my left eye. I think this might be like swelling under the bone because it gets worse and better on different days. I plan to ask about it at my followup which will be hopefully around the end of this month or beg. of Jan when I will be traveling to Seattle. That's really my only question and I'm not too concerned about it. I've been sitting here looking at before pictures and thinking man, I can't believe it looked like that just last month! It seems like such a huge difference when you look at the pics but I've had a couple people say they didn't even really notice, that it looks natural - and that's exactly what I wanted to hear! I am so happy I did this! My whole experience with Dr. Portuese was great. I plan to review him but figured I'd wait until after my followup. Here's a bunch of pictures from yesterday and today, with some befores as a reminder :)


Had some photo technical difficulties will try again

4 weeks post op photos

Two & a half months post-op

At 2 1/2 months post op I am still loving my nose! It ALMOST feels like my own again, both physically and mentally. I still have that bump of swelling right between my eyes. It's not visible to the eye but I can feel with my fingers and have a hard time not touching it all the time to see if it's still there. Same thing with the little ridge I mentioned in my last post. I was able to ask Dr. Portuese about both at my followup and he reassured me that both are still due to swelling. He said the ridge is right where he broke the bone and should settle down over time. That appt was back in Dec. at the 6 week mark. I flew to Seattle, took the light rail from Sea-Tac down to the Pike Place Market for lunch and then walked to my appointment. Dr. P said everything looked great. He did give me a cortisone shot above the tip of my nose to help with residual swelling (ouch! - made my eyes water!). It did make a difference in refining my nose just a bit more. Since my surgery I have had a huge boost in confidence (more than expected) and am SO happy I did it. I have no regrets and am updating my review to "Worth it!"

6 month update

Still so happy at 6 months! There have been no complications, no changes after the fact. The swelling is pretty much gone now but it still feels just a bit funny when I touch the bridge of my nose. I think about my nose FAR less these days but when I do they are positive thoughts! No regrets!
Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon

I am so happy I had the opportunity for Dr. Portuese to perform my rhinoplasty! He is an extremely talented and experienced surgeon. I traveled across the country to see him and would do it again without question. The entire staff (office staff, care coordinator, nurses, anesthesiologists and of course Dr. Portuese) were great at what they do and were also warm and kind. Above all, I absolutely love my new nose and the increased confidence it has given me!

5 out of 5 stars Overall rating
5 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
5 out of 5 stars Wait times
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