Rhinoplasty: Before & After – Six Years Later

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Before and 1 year after of a rhinoplasty

Before and 1 year after of a rhinoplasty

Questions and Answers

How did you choose a plastic surgeon?
I actually went to an Ear, Nose, Throat (ENT) Specialist who also performed plastic surgeries. He came as a personal recommendation. Mainly, I wanted a way to fix my allergies. So I went through the allergen tests and several related medical appointments. When septoplasty was mentioned, I decided to take the opportunity to adjust my appearance at the same time.

How much did it cost?
In 2008, it cost me $5,000.

Do you look different
No. The response from friend’s was extremely varied. A few knew that something looked different. I cut my hair drastically at the same time so there was a combination change there. A few friends didn’t notice anything at all, even after I told them. A relative was positively surprised, thinking it was would be a much more drastic change. I still look like me!

Did anyone say anything mean to you/judge you about it?
Yes, one person. The ex-girlfriend of my then-boyfriend said a few catty things to me. None of my friends, or anyone who actually mattered, judged me in any way. The procedure was noticeable but not obvious. I definitely still look like myself.

How much time did you take off from work?
My surgery was on a Tuesday. I went back to the doctor to remove the bandages the following Wednesday. Then I went back to work the Thursday after. So six days in total. Although the bandages were off, I still had black and blue’s under my eyes. I wore lots of liquid make-up for the first few days until the bruising went away completely. My face was still swollen for 3-4 weeks after. You can easily see how swollen my face was in the “2 Weeks” photo above.

Did you tell anyone you were having it done?
Only a few close friends knew I was modifying my appearance. I told work, and most people, I was having the septoplasty procedure done. At the time, I didn’t want to make it a big deal because I was nervous about the results. Now, I am very open about it. I still tell people I had a septoplasty but always admit to having the full rhinoplasty when asked directly.

How long did you have to wear a bandage/cast?
Recovery details are below. But a simple answer is for about 5 days. I was able to have it removed at my first follow-up appointment that was six days after the surgery. You have a bandage over your nose (see photos below) and splints inside your nose. This means you cannot breathe through your nose. At all.

Do you have any regrets?
Nope. I know I could have lived a happy life without the procedure. But am living a happy one now, too. I didn’t think I was ugly previously. I regularly dated and had been in serious relationships. I would say I had fairly positive self-esteem. The only part of my body I did not like, was my overly large nose. I knew I was still attractive, but it was very distinct. And it did bother me. I am actually grateful that I had the opportunity and means to reduce my nose. I have no qualms now over the fact that I’ve modified my appearance.


Rhinoplasty Recovery

Day Of Surgery
First day of rhinoplasty surgery It was an outpatient surgery; I was not admitted to a hospital. I spent a little over four hours in the surgery room. I was given full anesthesia. When I woke up in a room next to the operating room, the first thing asked was “Was everything okay?” There was a nurse in the room waiting for me to wake-up. This photo shows how I left the surgery. There is still some residual bleeding for the first 24 hours. It’s recommended to keep the extra bandage on for that time period. Because of the bleeding, this part was kind of gross.

One Day after Surgery
first day after rhinoplasty surgery This photo was taken the day after the surgery, once I had removed the extra bandage. I felt incredibly tired for the first four days after surgery. The anesthesia and physical recovery left me exhausted. For this first week after the surgery, you cannot sleep laying down. You must sleep sitting propped up with your face as centered as possible.

Two Days After Surgery
two days after rhinoplaty surgery Your face is swollen. It hurts to move your face in any way. It hurt to laugh, to smile, to take a drink. Since you cannot breathe through your nose, your throat gets very dry. But it’s difficult to drink because it hurts to move your jaw in that way. Even walking hurt! I had no idea how much force every step puts on your face/bones. I really did nothing but lay in bed for four days straight going in and out of sleep.

Three Days After Surgery
five days after rhinoplasty This is pretty much would I looked like for most of the recovery. I would put a movie on Netflix, then lay uncomfortably in bed holding a bag of frozen peas to my face. Glamorous I tell ya.

Four Days After Surgery
three days after rhinoplasty I didn’t experience much pain throughout this time. Just discomfort. I was constantly exhausted. My throat was always dry. My face was sore. I was given pain medication but never took them. Maybe I took a few aspirin if I had to get up and move around a little bit. To avoid having to get out of bed, I had a little care station set-up next to my bed. Reading or even sitting up was too tiring. I couldn’t even sit at my computer desk for more than five minutes. Also, this was 2008. I didn’t have a smartphone.

Five Days After Surgery
four days after rhinoplasty By the last end of this home-bound week, I did start getting antsy. I did not want to leave the apartment with the bandage on. But I started feeling more awake and had slightly more energy. I could do get out of bed to do a few crafts in the house. I could actually walk downstairs and eat dinner sitting at the table. I could drive though I didn’t want to.

Seven Days After Surgery – Bandage and Splints Removed
seven days after rhinoplasty bandage removed After seven days, I went back to see the surgeon. He removed the bandage and splints from inside my nose. I could now breathe through my nose. I was encouraged to blow my nose, hard, for the next few days. This was to help get sinus guck out of there. I did have some restrictions still, even with the bandage off. I couldn’t wear sunglasses for up to six months. I’m not sure what you do if you wear prescription glasses. Honestly, I wouldn’t want to wear them anyway as my nose was pretty sensitive for a while. For the most part, I was feeling pretty normal two weeks after the surgery.

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