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Rhinoplasty (Nose job)

Rhinoplasty is a common surgical procedure to reshape your nose

Surgeon and their assistant performing a rhinoplasty (nose job)
Rhinoplasty, commonly known as a nose job, is a common surgical procedure to reshape your nose.

Call or book online today to arrange a consultation to discuss a private rhinoplasty with a consultant of your choice at Circle Health Group.

This page explains what rhinoplasty is, what happens during the procedure, and what to expect during your recovery.

The cost of this procedure depends on your reason for having it, as well as your individual circumstances surrounding the surgery.

Our fixed-price packages include the cost of your surgery and all appropriate aftercare appointments. However, any pre-surgery diagnostic tests and your consultant’s outpatient appointment consultation fee are charged separately.

Our flexible payment options help you spread the cost of your payment across a time period that suits you.

If you have private health insurance, the procedure will usually be covered by your provider. Speak to your insurer directly to find out.

You may decide to have rhinoplasty surgery because you are unhappy with the way your nose looks, or to fix a problem such an injury, birth defect or problems breathing through your nose.

Rhinoplasty surgery can:

  • Increase or decrease the size of your nose
  • Change the shape of your nose, including your nostrils
  • Alter the angle between your nose and top lip
  • Restructure your nose after it’s been broken or damaged due to an injury or accident
  • Help you breathe through your nose more easily

At your first consultation, you will be seen by a consultant plastic surgeon. Your consultant will ask you about your reasons for wanting to have a rhinoplasty and some questions about your medical history, including any chronic (long-term) health conditions, allergies, previous surgeries, and any medications you take regularly.

Your consultant will examine your nose to check the structure, skin thickness and strength of the cartilage at the end of your nose.

If rhinoplasty is a suitable procedure for you, your consultant will discuss your expectations for treatment and tell you what kind of result can be achieved. They may show you before and after photographs of previous rhinoplasties.

Why is this first consultation so important?

At Circle Health Group, your first appointment is very important, as it’s where we get to know you and your expectations for treatment. It’s also an opportunity for you to ask your consultant any questions you may have.

At the end of your appointment, your consultant will talk to you about how to prepare for your surgery, any possible risks, and complications and what to expect during your recovery.

Your consultant will tell you everything you need to do to prepare for your rhinoplasty. If there’s anything you’re not sure about, or if you have any questions about how to prepare for your surgery, speak to your consultant or call the hospital for advice. Being well-prepared for your surgery will help to ease any anxiety you may have as well as allow your surgery and recovery to go more smoothly.

Before your surgery, tell your consultant about any medical conditions or allergies you have and any medication, including over-the-counter medicines you are taking.

Your consultant may tell you to stop taking some medications like blood thinners before your operation. This is to reduce the risk of bleeding during and after your surgery.

You will not be able to eat or drink anything from midnight on the day of your operation.

What lifestyle changes can I make before my surgery?

Being in the best possible health before your surgery can reduce the risk of complications and speed up your recovery.

To make sure you are as healthy as possible before your surgery:

  • Eat a healthy, balanced diet with plenty of fruit, vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains
  • If you smoke, try to stop at least eight weeks before your surgery
  • Avoid alcohol for a few days before and after your surgery. Alcohol thins the blood and can increase the risk of bleeding
  • Take regular exercise

Rhinoplasty is carried out under general anaesthetic which means you’ll be asleep for the procedure.

The surgery can be performed in two ways:

  • Inside your nose through your nostrils (closed rhinoplasty)
  • Through an incision (cut) between your nostrils (open rhinoplasty)

What happens during rhinoplasty surgery depends on what changes are made to your nose and the result you want to achieve. This may include:

  • Removing cartilage from the tip of your nose to improve the shape
  • Shaving down a bump on the bridge (dorsum) of your nose
  • Straightening your septum (the wall between the two sides of your nose)
  • Straightening and narrowing your nose by breaking and resetting your nasal bones
  • Rebuilding part of your nose using cartilage from another part of your body, such as your rib or ear

Depending on what is done during the procedure, rhinoplasty normally takes between 90 minutes and three hours.

Recovery from any type of surgery is different for everyone and depends on factors such as your age, general health and whether there are any complications during your surgery or recovery.

Rhinoplasty recovery timeline

The first 24 hours

When you wake up, you can expect to have a splint on your nose. You may have packing inside your nose and will need to breathe through your mouth. The packing is usually removed after 12 to 24 hours.

The first week

  • You will have facial swelling and bruising and may feel as if you have a heavy cold
  • You may have some bleeding or bloodstained fluid from your nose for the first few days
  • You’ll need to sleep sitting up for the first week after your surgery
  • Applying ice packs or cold compresses can help to reduce facial swelling
  • Avoid blowing your nose and try to avoid sneezing during this time (sneeze with your mouth open to reduce pressure inside the nose)
  • Your splint is normally removed after about a week, along with any external stitches
  • If you go outside, apply a high factor sunscreen to your face for at least six months after your surgery
  • You may feel well enough to return to work after around a week to ten days

Two weeks after your surgery

  • Most of the swelling and bruising has disappeared, though you may still have some bruising around your eyes

Three to four weeks after your surgery

  • You can start strenuous exercise, such as running, cycling, and swimming

Six weeks after your surgery

  • Your nasal bones are now stabilised, and you can start wearing glasses, blowing your nose and activities like contact sports and weight training
  • You may still have some numbness around the tip of your nose

Three to six months after your surgery

  • Any remaining numbness should start to resolve

12 months after your surgery

  • The healing process is complete, and all swelling has subsided to show your nose’s final shape

How many nights will I need to stay in hospital?

You’ll normally need to spend one to two nights in hospital after your rhinoplasty.

Will I be able to drive home?

You will not be able to drive yourself home from hospital after your rhinoplasty. Please arrange for someone to collect you, or we can organise a taxi if you prefer.

How soon can I go back to work?

How soon you can go back to work after your surgery depends on your individual recovery and the type of job you do. Most people take between one and two weeks off work after rhinoplasty.

How soon can I drive?

You should be able to drive 24 to 48 hours after your rhinoplasty. Don’t drive while taking prescription painkillers, or other medications that may affect your concentration and reaction times.

When will I be back to normal?

You should be able to resume most normal activities within two to three weeks of your surgery. It takes a year for the swelling to go down completely after your rhinoplasty.

As with all types of surgery, rhinoplasty carries a small risk of complications. Your consultant will explain all the possible risks and complications before your surgery and answer any questions you may have about your procedure. Being as well-informed as possible about what to expect from your surgery will help put your mind at rest and allow you to make an informed decision, so please ask any questions you may have.

Possible complications of any surgery include:

  • Bleeding
  • Infection
  • Blood clots
  • Adverse reactions to the anaesthetic

Possible complications specific to rhinoplasty include:

  • Bleeding (usually minor)
  • Nerve injury
  • Altered sense of smell
  • Altered breathing
  • Graft rejection
  • Dissatisfaction with the result

At Circle Health Group, we have the experience and expertise to ensure the best possible care and outcome for our patients. As a patient with Circle Health Group, you can expect the highest standards of care, including:

  • Flexible appointment times and locations that are convenient for you
  • The freedom to choose which hospital and consultant suit your needs
  • Personalised, consultant-led treatment plans tailored to your individual needs
  • Comfortable and safe private facilities maintained by expert multidisciplinary teams
  • Private ensuite rooms as standard
  • A range of delicious healthy meals
  • Affordable, fixed-price packages with aftercare included
  • Flexible payment options to help you spread the cost of your care

If you would like to see a consultant or learn more about rhinoplasty surgery, book your appointment online today or call a member of our team directly.

Content reviewed by Circle in-house team in February 2024. Next review due February 2027.

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