Today's question is, "I have heard that it can take a year to see my final result. Is this true?" And the answer is, "Typically, yes. It is true." Sometimes, even 18 months before you can see the result, and why is that? Well, what is rhinoplasty really but changing the shape of the nose and how that's done is by lifting the skin off of what's beneath it. And what's beneath it is bone and the upper third of the nose and cartilage which is on the lower two-thirds of the nose. The bone and the cartilage is manipulated sometimes. Bone and cartilage is removed sometimes. Cartilage is actually added to the nose, but when you lift the skin it swells. It gets swollen and the area around the nose gets swollen. So, it takes anywhere from three weeks, maybe even three months for all of the swelling to go away.

Well, if I just said three months, why does it take a full year? And the answer is the skin undergoes a process called contraction, no different than that shrink wrap effect. You may see your shrink wrap of the products that you don't know how to get open. You know, they're really tight, and you have to sort of cut it in order to get your product out of the shrink-wrapped covering. So, the nose has to undergo the shrink wrap effect, and that could take up to a year.

I have a good example here. I have used this in other videos. This is perhaps a example of a swollen nose and here is the manipulated structure underneath it, and it will take some time for all of this swelling to go away. But even then, once this sketched thin, then it may be difficult for the skin to undergo contraction. When it finally does get contracted, it will look a little bit more like this, but then over the course of a year, it'll get really, really nice and tight and conform to the underlying structure in most of the cases.

Rhinoplasty Recovery Time: How Long WIll It Take?

Dr. Philip Miller explains "contraction," a process necessary for the nose to undergo in order for the patient to see the full results of their rhinoplasty.