Nose Job – When is it Right for You?

Nose job- before and after (photo from

How far would you go in search of the perfect nose? Are you willing to go under the knife to have that perfect looking nose?

Rhinoplasty, what we all know as nose job, sometimes referred to as “nose reshaping” and nose surgery, will improve the appearance and proportion of the nose. It can be done for medical reasons — such as to correct breathing problems related to the nose or to correct congenital structural abnormalities; disfigurement resulting from blunt, penetrating and piercing trauma; or other conditions such as melanomas and basal cell carcinoma resulting from skin cancer.

It can also be done for cosmetic reasons – to enhance facial harmony and therefore – self confidence. Rhinoplasty surgery can change the nose size, in relation to the other facial structures by adjusting nasal asymmetry and deviation. It can alter the width from the nose bridge, and change nose profile by removing visible humps or depressions on the bridge. It can change the nasal tip by removing large or bulbous, drooping, and adjusting upturned and wide nostrils.

How is rhinoplasty done?

Nose job- before and after (photo from

During rhinoplasty, the surgeon makes incisions to access the bones and cartilage that support the nose. The incisions are usually made inside the nose so that they are invisible after the surgery. Some bone and cartilage may be removed, or tissue may be added (either from another part of the body or using a synthetic filler), depending on the desired result. After the surgeon has rearranged and reshaped the bone and cartilage, the skin and tissue is redraped over the structure of the nose. A splint is placed outside the nose to support the new shape of the nose as it heals. Nasal packing may be used inside the nose to prov

Rhinoplasty can be performed under local or general anesthesia, depending on the exact procedure and your preference. It may be performed in a surgeon’s office, a hospital, or an outpatient surgery center. Complex procedures may require a short hospital stay. The procedure usually takes 1 -2 hours, but may take longer.

With local anesthesia, the nose and the area around it is numbed. You will probably be lightly sedated, but awake during the surgery (relaxed and not feeling pain). General anesthesia allows the patient to sleep through the operation, and is typically used in children.

Will the results long lasting?

The results of nose surgery are usually permanent, but the cartilage may continue to reshape and move tissue that may change the outcome over time. Healing though,  is a slow and gradual process. The swelling, specially the tip of the nose, may take several months to fully dissipate and up to a year – and sometimes, it may take longer for the outcome of the surgery to fully refine.

What are the risks of rhinoplasty?

Deciding to undergo rhinoplasty is a big step and a big deciding factor is if the benefits will fulfill your goals and if the risks and potential rhinoplasty complications are acceptable.  A rhinoplasty procedure is a good option for you if: you are 13 years of age or older (which means that your facial growth is complete); you are physically healthy; you do not smoke and you have specific, but realistic goals in mind for the improvement of your appearance.

Every surgery has risks  and your plastic surgeon and/or staff should explain in detail the risks associated with rhinoplasty. You will be asked to sign consent forms to ensure that you fully understand the procedure you will undergo and any risks or potential complications.

The risks of rhinoplasty include:

  • Rupture of   small surface vessels of the nose
  • Infection
  • Poor wound  healing
  • Anesthesia risks
  • Bleeding  (hematoma)
  • Nose  asymmetry
  • Cardiac and pulmonary complications can occur in longer surgical procedures and may be  associated with the formation of, or increase in, blood clots in the venous system
  • Change in  skin sensation (numbness)
  • Nasal airway  alterations may occur after a rhinoplasty or septoplasty that may  interfere with normal passage of air through the nose
  • Nasal septal perforation (a hole in the nasal septum) may develop but is rare; additional surgical treatment may be necessary to repair the nasal septum  but in some cases, it may be impossible to correct this complication
  • Pain, which  may persist
  • Undesirable rhinoplasty  scarring
  • Skin contour irregularities
  • Skin discoloration and post rhinoplasty swelling
  • Sutures may  spontaneously surface through the skin, become visible or produce      irritation that require removal
  • Possibility  of revisional surgery

Ensure that you follow specific instructions after the procedures such as: How to care of  the surgical site; what medications to apply or take orally to aid healing and reduce the potential for infection, and when to follow up with your plastic surgeon.

How much will nose surgery cost?

Rhinoplasty prices can vary widely. A surgeon’s cost may vary based on his or her experience as well as geographic office location. The price of nose surgery may include: the surgeon’s fee, the hospital or surgical facility costs; anesthesia fees; prescriptions for medication and medical tests. If it is an elective surgery,  specially if done for cosmetic purposes, you will pay for these costs without the help of insurance. When nose surgery is performed to improve breathing function, this procedure is considered reconstructive and may be covered by insurance. This requires a detailed examination to verify the cause of your breathing impairment and prior authorization from your insurer.

In general, you can expect the entire rhinoplasty procedure to cost between $3,500 and $10,000 in the United States. This amount covers the surgeon’s fees, anesthesiologist’s fees and the fees due to the facility where the rhinoplasty was performed. The facility fees range between $700 and $1,000. The anesthesiologist is also paid between $700 and $1,000 for services provided during rhinoplasty. The surgeon’s fees are, by far, the largest cost of rhinoplasty. The average surgeon’s fees for rhinoplasty in the US are $4,277. As with all plastic surgeries, the average cost of rhinoplasty is different depending on US geographical region. In general, surgeons in the Northeast and on the West coast charge more for per procedure that in the Midwest and South.

Choose a surgeon you can trust

Deciding to undergo rhinoplasty is a major life-changing decision, and it is best if you do have this done by someone you can trust. Ensure that your plastic surgeon

  • Has completed  at least five years of surgical training with a minimum of two years in  plastic surgery.
  • Is trained and experienced in all plastic surgery procedures, including breast, body, face and reconstruction.
  • Operates only  in accredited medical facilities.
  • Adheres to a strict code of ethics.
  • Fulfills  continuing medical education requirements, including standards and   innovations in patient safety.

The nose is one of the prominent features of the face, and can have a big impact on your self-image and appearance. If you’re unhappy with your nose and have been so for a long time, rhinoplasty is a reasonable option to consider but remember that you will only be happy with the results of rhinoplasty if you have clear, realistic expectations about what the surgery can achieve and ensure that you share these with your plastic surgeon.

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