Rhinoplasty aims to improve the proportions of the nose leading to overall facial aesthetics and harmony. It can also correct breathing issues caused by structural problems in the nose.
A rhinoplasty can change size, shape and proportions of the nose. It may be done to repair deformities resulting from injury, correct problems present from birth or improve some breathing difficulties.
Rhinoplasty requires local anaesthesia with sedation or general anaesthetic, depending on how complex the surgery is. Dr Sofianos will discuss this with you preoperatively and pick the type of anaesthetic right for you.
Rhinoplasty is performed through a small external incision at the base of the nose, between the nostrils. This incision is extended into the inside of the nostrils. Dr Sofianos then modifies the bone and cartilage underneath the skin, depending on the preoperative decision and discussion.
Depending on how much cartilage needs to be removed or added, different options are available. For small modifications, Dr Sofianos may use cartilage taken from deeper inside the nose or from the ear. For larger modifications, cartilage from a rib is used.
If the cartilage between the two sides of the nose (septum) is crooked (deviated), it is modified using a procedure called a septoplasty, so as to improve breathing.
At the end of the procedure, the nose's skin and tissue is returned to its original position and the incisions are stitched closed.
Upon waking from surgery, you can expect some pain inside the nose and over the incisions. Patients usually go home the same day or might need to stay overnight.
After rhinoplasty, one must rest in bed with the head raised higher than the chest, to reduce bleeding and swelling. Your nose may feel congested because of swelling and from the splints placed inside the nose during the procedure. Slight bleeding and drainage of mucus are common for a few days after surgery. Dr Sofianos usually places a "drip pad" — a small piece of gauze held in place with tape — under the nose to absorb these excess drainage.
Most of the time, the internal dressings remain in place for seven days after surgery. Dr Sofianos also tapes an external splint to the nose for protection and support.