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Am I a candidate for nasal reshaping surgery or rhinoplasty?

The best way to determine if you are a good candidate for nasal reshaping surgery is to have a personal consultation with Dr. Lo. During your consultation, you will discuss your wishes for improvement of your nose and Dr. Lo will determine if rhinoplasty surgery will help you reach your goals.

At what age can I have my rhinoplasty surgery?

Dr. Lo recommends that men be a minimum age of 17 and women be a minimum age of 14 to undergo rhinoplasty surgery. The nose should be fully developed before having surgery.

I broke my nose before, does this affect my rhinoplasty surgery?

No. During your consultation, Dr. Lo will determine what affect your previous injury to your nose will have on your surgery. Usually, rhinoplasty surgery will correct any type of deformity that resulted from your injury.

I have trouble breathing through my nose, will this be corrected during my nasal reshaping surgery?

During your consultation, your breathing will be assessed by Dr. Lo. During your rhinoplasty surgery, Dr. Lo would like to improve your breathing, if possible. This may involve performing a septoplasty during your procedure or improving the function of your nasal valves.

How long does the rhinoplasty procedure take?

Your surgery will take about 1 hour to 1 ½ hours to perform. This includes a septoplasty and/or nostril reduction if recommended.

Is rhinoplasty surgery safe?

All surgeries have some risk. However, rhinoplasty surgery has safe although there are risks and complications that are not usually life threatening.

Dr. Lo and his team are experienced in rhinoplasty procedures and are dedicated to providing a safe and comfortable environment. Safety is always our number 1 priority.

Your rhinoplasty procedure will be performed in the safety and sterility of the outpatient hospital or hospital surgicenter (Pennsylvania Hospital which is part of the University of Pennsylvania Health System). You will have a doctor anesthesiologist who is part of Dr.Lo’s team looking after you, Dr. Lo (of course) and his team of two experienced nurses.

What type of anesthesia is used for my procedure?

Dr. Lo performs his rhinoplasty procedures under general anesthesia (you are completely asleep and comfortable). He feels that this is the best way to have your procedure rather than other types of anesthesia where your airway and breathing cannot be controlled as well and you may still feel or hear the surgery being performed.

As mentioned, your surgery is performed in accredited, modern facilities of Pennsylvania Hospital and the Pennsylvania Hospital Surgicenter. Your anesthesia will be administered by Dr. Lo’s anesthesia team which includes a doctor anesthesiologist and a nurse anesthetist.

What are the risks of rhinoplasty surgery?

Nasal reshaping surgery is safe but there are risks that happen about 1 % or less depending on each person’s individual situation. Dr. Lo will let you know whether your risk for a certain complication is more or less. Complications include bleeding that does not stop, infection, loss of feeling on the nasal skin, significant asymmetry (more than normal), lumpy uneven contour and breathing problems. Most complications from rhinoplasty surgery can be improved although a second surgery would be required at additional cost.

How much time should I take off work or school?

Most of Dr. Lo’s rhinoplasty patients take 1 week off, sometimes 10 days. This is because at 1 week, the nasal splint comes off and if you have stitches or sutures, they are removed at this time. Thus your nose looks fairly normal at this time, and school and work is possible. Makeup can be used at this time. Most of the bruising and swelling have resolved, maybe not completely.

Is rhinoplasty surgery painful?

The amount of pain varies from patient to patient. Most of Dr. Lo’s patients have mild to moderate pain after the surgery. They describe it not so much as pain but like a dull ache almost like a headache. You are given pain relief medications to take that will help with controlling the pain. Keeping your head elevated at about 45 degrees will help with the pain and swelling. This is done by propping yourself up on pillows while in bed or resting in a recliner. Ice also helps to control the pain and swelling and is advised for the first 72 hours. The ice packs are placed at the base of your nose between your eyes and lower eyelids to control the swelling and pain. Inside your nose will likely be swollen and you may have to breathe mainly through your mouth for a few weeks. You should avoid blowing your nose for 2 weeks.

When will I see the results of my nasal reshaping/rhinoplasty surgery?

You will begin to see some of your results when your nasal splint comes off at one work after surgery. This will be an exciting moment!

As the days and weeks go by, you will see changes to your nose every day. At one month you will see about 75% of your results. Complete results may not be seen for 6 months to 1 year. Often the last to resolve is any swelling of your nasal tip and for normal feeling of your nose to come back.

What is the follow up visits with Dr. Lo after my rhinoplasty surgery?

Your first visit is one week after surgery. During this visit, your nasal splint will be removed and any stitches or sutures will be removed. You will see your new nose at this time although it will continue to change over the next few months and improve in appearance.

After the first visit, you will be scheduled for a 2 week, 1 month, 3 month, 6 month and 1 year visits. The follow up visits are important to make sure that normal healing is taking place, swelling is going down, sensation is returning and that your breathing is back to normal.

What if I am not completely happy with the results of the nose surgery?

Dr. Lo wants you to be completely happy with the results of your nasal reshaping. It is important that you discuss your concerns with him. Remember to have realistic expectations about the results of your surgery. For most surgeries, we can expect a major improvement but not always complete correction. Surgery and healing afterwards can sometimes be unpredictable.

In 5% of patients, a revisional rhinoplasty surgery to improve your nasal appearance may be recommended 6 months to 1 year after the original surgery. Dr. Lo usually waives his surgical fee and you are only responsible for any hospital or anesthesia cost with the second surgery.