Rhinoplasty Recovery Timeline: What to Expect
Patients have many questions when they are considering rhinoplasty. One of these questions is what the recovery timeline is like. No two patients are alike, and therefore no two recoveries are exactly alike. Most patients tend to follow a general rhinoplasty recovery timeline after surgery at our Philadelphia, PA office. Dr. Christopher R. Hove can explain the recovery process in detail so you know what to expect after your surgery. He can also make you aware of any factors that might result in a longer-than-average recovery period. Understanding the recovery process and being prepared is the first step toward a successful and timely recovery.
Day of Surgery
After your procedure is complete, Dr. Hove will place a nasal splint, and packing or a drip pad to collect any excess fluids. You will likely feel groggy for several hours following your surgery. Dr. Hove will prescribe pain medication to keep your discomfort to a minimum. You may also want to gently ice the area to help keep the swelling down.
Days Two and Three
These first couple days are usually the most difficult for patients. Continue taking your pain medication and icing your nose to relieve pain and swelling. Make sure to keep your head elevated as you sleep to minimize bruising. You can resume light activities such as walking during this time, but avoid bending over or blowing your nose. If any packing was placed, it is generally removed by Dr. Hove on day two.
Days Four through Seven
The nasal splint and stitches are typically removed by the end of the first week. You will still have some swelling, but you can better visualize the new appearance of your nose at this point. Most patients return to work after a week, but continue to avoid strenuous activities. It is important to limit your sun exposure either by wearing a hat or avoid exposure altogether for at least two months.
Some patients may need more than a week off work. Generally, most patients have returned to work by the end of week two. At this time, your swelling and bruising are minimal to others.
Weeks Three and Four
Between weeks three and four, you can expect to return to your normal exercise and activity levels. You may need several more weeks, however, before returning to more strenuous sports and exercise. Most of your swelling should have subsided by now, but the tip of the nose usually takes the longest.
Months Two and Three
By this point, any swelling around the bridge of the nose should have subsided completely. You may still experience some numbness at the tip of the nose. This is normal and the feeling should gradually return. The scar from an open procedure will begin to fade.
12 Months Post-surgery
At this point, all swelling has typically subsided and you can clearly see your final results. Any scarring will have faded almost completely by now.
Learn More about Rhinoplasty Recovery
If you are interested in rhinoplasty but want more information, contact us today to schedule a consultation with Dr. Hove.