Edema- Post Rhinoplasty

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When you undergo a Rhinoplasty procedure, post operative swelling is to be expected and may last for up to a year following your surgery. This isn’t to say your nose will look appear swollen, but your tissue and cartilage is still going through the healing process and necessary changes. Edema post-rhinoplasty is related to swelling caused by trauma during surgery and swelling due to the body’s retention of fluid. As your nasal components heal, the swelling will begin to decrease.

How Edema is a natural occurrence post-surgery

Each rhinoplasty procedure is catered to the individualized needs of the patient, every candidate heals differently. Depending on the manner of your procedure and the way your skin contracts, healing times will understandably vary. Major factors which may affect your healing time are the thickness of your skin, areas of the nose treated and whether you’ve had an open or closed procedure. Of course the extent of your surgery will have the greatest effect on how long your swelling lasts. While your whole nose is affected, the swelling will be most prevalent in the tip. To offset the inevitable nasal swelling, we recommend limiting your amount of salt intake to decrease fluid retention.

What to expect after your Rhinoplasty procedure

Following your rhinoplasty procedure we suggest you apply cold ice compresses to the affected area throughout the next seven to ten days. This will help soothe the pain and slightly minimize swelling as the pain medication wears off. Immediately following the operation we comfort our patients by utilizing a head lift and nasal splint for up to a week. At home, sleeping with your head on a few pillows will vastly increase blood flow to the necessary areas and work to reduce swelling. It’s quite important to limit sodium, alcohol, tobacco and exercise as your nose continues to heal.

When to be concerned about Edema

Nasal Edema is most prominent within the first six months following surgery and should resolve itself by the one year mark. As your nose gradually heals itself, we’ve found it quite common for patients to be concerned about swelling. After the first three weeks, your nose will still feel swollen, but it isn’t so obvious to others. Persistent nasal tip Edema is to be expected, but if you notice any abnormalities in your breathing you need to visit a doctor. If the Edema is becoming more aggressive, please visit a medical professional to ensure everything is healing properly.

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If you have had excessive swelling, breathing problems, or other related symptoms for more than a week, it is best to seek a doctor’s advice. Please contact Dr. Furze, one of Orange County’s leading specialists in Edema and nose surgery for a consultation.

Written by Dr. Furze
Last updated: Mon 27 March, 2017
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