Most people have a little pain after nasal surgery. The most uncomfortable part of the recovery is the nasal congestion due to internal nasal swelling for the first week or two. Painkillers will be prescribed if necessary but many patients do not require any painkillers or are comfortable with Tylenol. Most patients will have some bruising and swelling around their eyes for one to two weeks.
By ten to fourteen days after Rhinoplasty surgery, most of the swelling will be settling and patients will start to look presentable to return to their daily activities. During the early recovery, patients are advised to avoid bending or heavy lifting. Light exercise can start at about three weeks. Contact sports should be avoided for at least two months as minor injury to the nose occurring up to that point can potentially damage the cosmetic result. Patients should avoid driving until the majority of their swelling around the eyes has resolved. Patients who travel to Toronto by air for the surgery with Dr. Solomon can safely travel by air at one week after surgery.
Post Rhinoplasty Surgery Recovery Tips
- Arnica which is available at most health food stores is considered safe and can be taken to reduce bruising from Rhinoplasty surgery.
- After rhinoplasty surgery it is helpful to sleep with your head elevated with a few pillows.
- Cool compresses or Ice packs are useful for reducing swelling in the first 24-48 hours.
- After your nasal packing is removed it is important to keep your nose moist with saline sprays and lubrication such as Vaseline or polysporin.
- If there is any dry blood in the nose one can clean it gently with three percent hydrogen peroxide and Q-tips.
- Too see an informational video regarding Rhinoplasty!
Rhinoplasty, Reconstructive Septorhinoplasty, Dorsal Resection or Nasal Fractures
PRE & POST-OPERATIVE INSTRUCTIONS
What you need:
- Q tips
- Hydrogen peroxide H202 3%
- Polysporin or bacitracin ointment
- Saline nasal spray such as Salinex or Hydrasense
- Arnica tablets or The Glisodin pre and post preparation, which can be taken 1 week prior to surgery and 1 week post op to reduce swelling (optional, ask secretary for details).
- Vitamin C. Patients may take up to 2000mg Vit C daily 2 weeks prior to surgery.
- Fill your prescriptions
- Ice packs
- Patients must have a ride arranged and confirmed.
What to Avoid 2 weeks before surgery:
- Smoking nicotine products
- Alcohol for at least 2 weeks pre-op, as it may increase bruising and prolong swelling.
- Naturopathic or herbal medications, unless approved by Dr. Solomon
- MUST discontinue Aspirin, Advil or Ibuprofen, as these products may increase bleeding.
- MUST avoid Garlic extract, fish oils and Vit E
Please note: If you have any concerns or questions prior to your surgery, you are encouraged to speak to Dr. Solomon in advance to ensure you are fully prepared for your surgical date.
Cleaning instructions: Starting day 2
- Clean opening of nostrils twice a day (morning and before bed) with hydrogen peroxide 3% (H202) using a Q tip. Do not insert Qtip up nostrils. Gently dab or wipe the opening of the nostril with the soaked Q tip to remove dried blood.
- It is recommended to use saline nasal spray daily. Administer 2 sprays of Salinex or Hydrasense to each nostril 3 to 4 times a day or as needed throughout the day. This will help to reduce swelling and improve breathing.
- Apply polysporin or bacitracin ointment inside nostrils after cleaning with H202 3% for up to 7-10 days. If you have allergies to these products, you may use Vaseline.
What you need to know:
- The splint will remain in place for 7-10 days. Dr. Solomon or his nurse will remove the splint in office. Avoid getting splint wet.
- Change surgical dressing (gauze taped beneath nose) as needed for the first 24-28hrs.
- Recommended to sleep with head elevated (propped up with pillows) for 3 days.
- Do not sleep on your face; ideally sleeping on your back is preferred for 2 weeks.
- In the majority of cases, the sutures are dissolvable, thus do not need to be removed.
- Standard post-operative swelling may last for up to 4-6 weeks. Please be patient
- You may experience pain during the recovery process. Take Tylenol for pain.
- Bathing is allowed one day post-operatively. Avoid direct stream of water for 1 week.
- Often patients experience heightened anxiety around the surgical period. This is normal.
What to expect after surgery:
- Your eyes may become quite swollen and bruised. You may get red spots on the white areas of your eyes. These effects generally last 2-3 weeks.
- Your nose will feel congested and difficult to breathe from for at least 2-3 weeks.
- You may have mild bleeding from the front of your nose or down the back of your throat for a few days.
- Your nose will be painful and tender for 2-3 weeks
- Your throat may be sore for several days
What to Avoid post surgery:
- Avoid sneezing through the nose. Try to sneeze through the mouth.
- Avoid blowing your nose for up to 4 weeks. Recommended to blow gently.
- Avoid picking at scabs. This can cause scarring.
- Avoid bending over or lifting heavy things for one week. Besides aggravating swelling, this may raise your blood pressure and start hemorrhage.
- Smoking, especially throughout the recovery period as smoking may prolong healing
- Alcohol for at least 2 weeks pre-op and post-operatively, as it may increase bruising and prolong swelling.
- Naturopathic or herbal medications, unless approved by Dr. Solomon
- Aspirin, Advil or Ibuprofen, as these products may prolong swelling.
- Physical exercise for up to 4 weeks post-operatively. Unless otherwise stated by Dr. Solomon.
- Direct sun exposure on incisions for up to 12 months. Use a minimum of SPF 45 daily.
- Do not wear eye glasses/ sun glasses on the nose for 6 weeks. Glasses must be taped to forehead.
- Avoid hot saunas. Commercial steamers and cool mist humidifiers are recommended at the bedside for 2-4 weeks post op.
The following are common concerns about the appearance of the nose in the early post-operative period.
- The tip of the nose often appears turned up or pig like at first. This is partially because of swelling in the upper lip and from taping. The tip will fall especially in the first 2 weeks and then more slowly after that. It is important that the tip be slightly over rotated at first so that it is not too droopy when it finally heals.
- There is often more bruising or swelling on one side then the other. This is normal and related to the amount of bleeding that occurred at the time of surgery.
- The nostrils often appear larger and sometime uneven. This is usually due to the swelling and will improve over time.
- When the splint is removed there is often swelling where the bump used to be. This goes down with time depending on the bodies healing process.
- The upper lip is very stiff after surgery. It moves very little and this makes your smile seem strange. This is usually related to swelling at the base of the nose. This always returns to normal with time especially after the first 2 weeks.
If you experience any of the following listed below, please contact Dr. Solomon directly by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call the office at 905.764.7799. If unable to reach us, please visit your nearest emergency department.
- If you develop a rash, persistent fever, chills or sweating.
- If you notice a foul odour or yellow drainage coming from the incision sites.
- If you experience severe nasal or throat pain, that is not controlled with Tylenol.
- If you experience persistent bleeding that does not resolve in 20 minutes or with direct pressure.
- Persistent vomiting and inability to drink liquids for greater than 4 hours
- Shortness of breath, chest pain, weakness or numbness in the face or limbs.
If you require any clarification regarding these instructions or would like to arrange a follow up appointment with the nurse, please call the office at 905.764.7799.