What Is Nose-Surgery Recovery Like? What Should I Expect?

A nose surgery also known as Rhinoplasty is performed to change the structure and shape of a nose for functional or cosmetic purposes. It is done to ease breathing problems due to disfigurement, genetic or birth defects, correct injuries and also for improving the shape for enhanced appearance. It is an outpatient surgery and can last anywhere from one to several hours.

The patient is discharged from the hospital on the same day in most cases after the anesthesia comes off. The recovery after the surgery is generally expected to chart the following course:

  • The patient have will their nose covered with a splint and bandages for around a week after the surgery. The splint is in place to maintain the new shape after the surgery. It is important to take care that the splint stays put and does not catch any moisture.
  • Patients experience nasal congestion owing to the bandages, some light bleeding for the first few days. While not painful, it is uncomfortable and generally accompanied with a loss of smell.
  • It is advised to stock up on softer easier to chew foods as patients generally report difficulty in chewing hard foods and a dry throat for a few days immediately after the surgery. Due to nasal congestion the patients mainly have to breathe through the channels of the mouth.
  • Swelling and bruising around the nose and eyes is expected. It is intense and quite noticeable just after the surgery but subsides considerably after a week. It is advised to rest the head in a reclining position as much as possible to minimize swelling.
  • It is imperative to take it easy and rest completely at least for a few days immediately after the surgery to facilitate quick recovery. Social engagements, work can be resumed slowly after a resting period of about a week.
  • Physical exercise can be resumed in moderation after 3 to 6 weeks of surgery if no other complication persists.
  • The minimal swelling after around 3 weeks of surgery is slow to subside and completely disappears only after a year or so. The final result of the surgery shows only after a few months or a year when the swelling goes away.
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