Rhinoplasty surgery takes 2-3 hours which is followed by an hour in recovery so tell friends and relatives to allow plenty of time before expecting to see you awake. With modern rhinoplasty anaesthetic techniques bruising is minimal but it may increase and move down over the cheeks over the first few post op rhinoplasty days.
Most people stay one night in hospital following rhinoplasty though some people are discharged that day. For the first night only you will need to sleep up on 3 pillows. Nurses or your relatives change the small rhinoplasty bandage under the nose. The nasal dressing in only required for the first night. This is not difficult for your family but it does mean getting up in the middle of the night.
Before discharge after rhinoplasty your doctor and nurses will show you how to douche the nose with saline. This will need to be done 6 times a day for 6 weeks to prevent crusting and infection in the rhinoplasty wound. Antibiotics will also be given to you, for one week.
After 5 to 7 days you will see your rhinoplasty surgeon for removal of the rhinoplasty splits both inside and outside the nose. Many people fear this visit but it is usually a great relief to have the plaster off and to breathe freely (and probably better than ever). Having sutures out is fiddly but not a huge discomfort.
After 5 days you will no longer be so tired in the afternoons so we encourage you to take up gentle exercise such as walking. By now your rhinoplasty plaster is off and you can wear makeup.
By 10 to 14 days post rhinoplasty, you will feel well enough to go to work.
Most rhinoplasty patients comment at this stage that there is very little pain following rhinoplasty surgery. They mainly notice post op fatigue and 5 days of nasal blockage.
Contact sports or wearing swimming goggles are avoided for 6 weeks following rhinoplasty. Sun or reading glasses also weigh down on the rhinoplasty wound and are best avoided for 3 weeks, more if they are particularly heavy.
Your post op rhinoplasty appointments will be made for 1 week, 2 week, 6 week, 3, 12 then 18 months. You will be surprised and pleased to see increasing definition in your post op rhinoplasty nose as healing occurs over this 18 month period. Remember as well the older we are, the longer it takes to heal.
The best way to prepare for rhinoplasty surgery is to ensure all your questions are answered. If you understand what rhinoplasty involves, your apprehension particularly on the day before rhinoplasty surgery will be less. Often this means arranging another appointment to see your rhinoplasty surgeon to discuss any specific issues about the aims to be achieved for your personal rhinoplasty, or issues regarding medications, sport, work or travel.
Please refer to our rhinoplasty website page for general instructions. This lists the 60 medications which will promote excessive bleeding and increase the risk of revision rhinoplasty. These medications e.g. Nurofen, Aspirin, Codral and Fish Oil should be avoided for two weeks prior to your rhinoplasty.
Sport or going to the gym within two weeks after rhinoplasty can cause bleeding. Exercise such as walking in the first two weeks following rhinoplasty is encouraged as it helps reduce swelling for you to be moving around. Contact sports such as soccer or netball are avoided for six weeks after rhinoplasty, to allow for firm bone healing.
Travel plans for the period following surgery should be discussed with your rhinoplasty surgeon as you will need regular post op consultations to check on the rhinoplasty wound healing … frequently, for the first six weeks then occasionally for a total of 18 months.
As you will be having a general anaesthetic, avoid alcohol for 24 hours prior to your rhinoplasty. Cease smoking as early as possible prior to surgery as your rhinoplasty wound healing will be compromised.
Lastly, another tip is to wash your hair the morning of the procedure as hair washing is tricky following surgery as you must keep your rhinoplasty plaster dry.