Rhinoplasty, which is more commonly known as a nose job, is one of the most widely performed facial plastic surgery procedures. Rhinoplasty alters the size and/or shape of the nose to bring better balance to the face. Rhinoplasty has a proven record of success, but as with any other surgical procedure, there is a small risk of complications.
Although the chance of rhinoplasty complications is extremely low, it is important that individuals consider all potential rhinoplasty risks before committing to surgery. Here, facial plastic surgeon David A. Sherris, who serves Buffalo, NY, and surrounding areas, goes over the complications that could develop following a rhinoplasty procedure.
An infection is the most common risk of any surgical procedure. Any time that an incision is made bacteria can work its way into the bloodstream and cause infection. Fortunately, the risk of infection after rhinoplasty is low, and patients can reduce the risk even further by carefully following all pre- and post-surgical care instructions, including removing and replacing bandages as instructed, cleaning the nose as directed, and taking all prescribed antibiotic medication.
Many rhinoplasty procedures involve making the nose smaller, which can result in a narrower nasal passage. If alterations are not made carefully, the structure of the nose can also be weakened. When combined, these issues can lead to breathing problems. While people may not struggle to breathe while awake, they may develop snoring, have difficulty sleeping, or find that they have a harder time maintaining a steady breath while exercising. Because of Dr. Sherris’ skill and experience, breathing problems are extremely unusual following rhinoplasty at his Buffalo plastic surgery clinic.
Nasal Septum Perforation
Nasal septum perforation is another rare complication of rhinoplasty. The nasal septum is the thin wall that separates the left and right nasal passages. Although it is not common, the nasal septum could be torn during a rhinoplasty procedure. A nasal septum perforation can cause excess bleeding, difficulty breathing, a whistling sound when breathing, or collapse of the inner nasal structure.
Poor Scar Healing
Most of our Buffalo patients are concerned about how incisions will heal after rhinoplasty, and what remaining scars will look like. There are two surgical techniques that can be used for a rhinoplasty procedure: the closed approach and the open approach.
When the closed approach is used, all incisions are made inside of the nose. When the open approach is used, small incisions are made along the skin that connects the left and right nostrils. In either case, incisions should heal nicely while leaving scars that are barely visible (if at all).
However, complications can occur as incisions heal. Poor healing can result in excessive scar tissue, which may lead to unsightly scars or excess bulk around the nose.
Unsatisfactory Aesthetic Results
One of the most common risks of rhinoplasty is unsatisfactory surgical results. The nose is a delicate area, and even slight alterations can significantly affect a person’s overall appearance. It is not unusual for patients to feel as though the nose has been over- or under-corrected after their rhinoplasty recovery is complete. Unfortunately, the only way to correct this complication is through revision surgery. Dr. Sherris aims to give his patients realistic expectations for what can and cannot be achieved through surgery, so they are not dissatisfied with their rhinoplasty results.
Despite the potential for complications, rhinoplasty surgery has a proven record of safety and success. If you are considering a nose job and would like to know if you are an ideal candidate for treatment, we invite you to schedule a consultation with Dr. David A. Sherris. To get started, send us a message online or call (716) 884-5102.