Rhinoplasty is the surgical method that changes the physical appearance of the nose. It is commonly referred to as a nose job, and employs different techniques to achieve a number of different results. A septorhinoplasty is a rhinoplasty during which a septoplasty is simultaneously carried out. During this procedure the septum - the part of the nose that separates it into two sections - is corrected.
There are many reasons people have rhinoplasty. First of all, nasal fractures are some of the most common injuries around, so rhinoplasty is often performed to correct the damage that was done after injury. Breathing difficulties are another common reason for rhinoplasty. Then, some people are unhappy with the appearance of the nose and have rhinoplasty purely for cosmetic reasons. This can be a small change, but sometimes operations are performed that completely change the structure of the nose. Cartilage, the bone-like tissue that supprt the nose, can be reshaped during rhinoplasty, added to or taken away from.
Doctors do not recommend rhinoplasty for patients in their early teens and under, because the cartilage still grows and changes at that stage in life. Nose jobs have the best results patients reach around 18 years of age.
The majority of patients undergoing a nose job do so under general anesthesia, but so-called "twilight" anesthesia combined with local anesthesia is common too. The type of anesthesia is a personal choice that is best reached in consultation with the surgeon performing the operation.
Recovery from rhinoplasty is relatively speedy. The nose tends to be
swollen after surgery, and bandages and splints are often applied for a
few days after the operation. It is possible that the nose will be
tender and painful, but swelling is the main reason rhinoplasty
patients usually take leave from work for a week. Heavy and prolonged
activity is discouraged for three weeks after surgery. The swelling
subsides dramatically in the first week after rhinoplasty, but actually
takes one year to disappear completely.
Before going in for surgery, the patient can describe their wishes to the surgeon and make a surgical plan on the basis of surgical analysis. The surgeon will use their knowledge and experience to create a nose that is suits the other facial features of the patient.
When rhinoplasty is performed to correct breathing problems, the operation is often covered by insurance policies, but cosmetic procedures are not covered by insurance unless there is severe disfigurement. When there is an overlap of cosmetic and medical reason, insurance may pay part of the procedure.
Any surgery carries risks, and rhinoplasty is no exception. Complications are very rare with rhinoplasty though, and most patients are very satisfied with the results of their operation. Some people do go in for an additional nose job to improve their looks. After rhinoplasty, pain killers are prescribed to help the patient cope with post-operative pain. The majority of rhinoplasty patients do not experience more than discomfort and pressure in the days after operation. A degree of bleeding is normal after the surgery, and many patients report a numbness in all or part of the nose after their nose jobs.
Nose jobs vary greatly in price, and depend on location and the reputation and experience of the surgeon. The typical cost of a nose job, with all fees and anesthesia included is anywhere from $4000 to $7000.