Unhappy with Your Nose Job? Learn About Secondary Rhinoplasty
- 17 August 2016
- Dr. Nidal (Nick) Masri
Cosmetic surgeries always come with some degree of risk—either you end up happy with your procedure or not. But the great thing about a rhinoplasty is that you can almost always correct it through a secondary rhinoplasty, hence helping you achieve your desired results.
Learn more about secondary rhinoplasty as you go through this article.
What is a secondary rhinoplasty?
Also known as revision rhinoplasty, secondary rhinoplasty is a cosmetic procedure performed to revise or correct the results of a previously done nose job that the patient found to be unsatisfactory.
There are various reasons why patients might not be happy with the results of her nose job. Most of the time, they are unhappy with the appearance of their noses. At other times, they may experience breathing difficulties after the surgery. A secondary rhinoplasty may also be needed when the patient suffers from traumatic injury after getting a nose job.
It is important to note that among all cosmetic procedures, rhinoplasty is already one of the most complex. A revision rhinoplasty is even more complex, so it is important to find a qualified surgeon who can satisfactorily do the nose job for you.
What are the benefits of a secondary rhinoplasty?
The main benefit of secondary rhinoplasty is that it can help you achieve the results that you want, hence translating to a confidence boost. You no longer have to worry too much regarding your first nose job, since a good revision rhinoplasty can address whatever nose imperfections are still bothering you.
Another benefit is its effect on the functionality of the nose. If done right, a revision rhinoplasty can definitely improve your nasal breathing and get rid of problems like sinusitis, snoring, and sleep apnea.
What are the risks of a secondary rhinoplasty?
Since secondary rhinoplasty is a complex procedure, it is not without its risks. It has the same risks as first-time rhinoplasties, such as bleeding, infection, scarring, nerve damage, prolonged swelling, nose asymmetry, anesthesia reactions, and burst blood vessels.
A secondary rhinoplasty also does not guarantee satisfactory results, so patients can end up being more disappointed than they were before since they may not be able to undergo another revision rhinoplasty. You should communicate your desired results and expectations with your cosmetic surgeon to make sure that you are satisfied with the results afterward. Choose a surgeon who understands your aesthetic goals and makes realistic predictions about your final results.
How different is secondary rhinoplasty from the traditional rhinoplasty?
Though both procedures aim to give you the best possible results for your nose job, secondary rhinoplasty is a lot more complex than your first rhinoplasty. Unlike primary rhinoplasty, secondary rhinoplasty must deal with scar tissue, hence adding another degree of complexity and unpredictability to the healing process. The surgeon doing this procedure needs a great deal of creativity, as there is a need for reconstructive techniques along with cosmetic enhancements.
Revision rhinoplasty also takes a longer period of time—usually three to four hours—as there is a greater chance of complications compared to traditional rhinoplasty. Additional cartilage grafting may also be required to rebuild the nose.
Am I a good candidate for secondary rhinoplasty?
The main criterion for a secondary rhinoplasty is dissatisfaction with a previous nose job. If your nose still looks a little too large or too small for your taste even after you have already had a rhinoplasty, then a secondary rhinoplasty may be able to correct that. If you are experiencing breathing problems right after you have had your nose job, then you are a good candidate for a revision rhinoplasty.
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In addition to those things, the patient should generally be in a good state of health and have realistic expectations regarding the results of the surgery.
What are the factors to consider in a secondary rhinoplasty?
One of the factors that you need to consider when undergoing revision rhinoplasty is age. While there are no age restrictions for secondary rhinoplasty, elderly patients need to make sure that they are in good health prior to the procedure and have realistic expectations regarding the results of the surgery. As for younger patients, rhinoplasty should be done in patients 15 years of age or older so as not to interfere with natural growth and prevent the nose from growing in an erratic manner.
Another thing to consider is the number of past nose surgeries, as several rhinoplasty procedures may be counterproductive to your goals. Also, significant nasal scar tissue left from previous surgeries might make you unsuitable for another revision rhinoplasty.
How is a secondary rhinoplasty performed?
After administering light general anesthesia, your cosmetic surgeon employs the open rhinoplasty technique, wherein the overlying skin is reflected to expose the deeper layers of tissue and allow for greater visibility of the nasal structures.
In some cases, it may be necessary to replace lost tissue and cartilage through grafting. Your cosmetic surgeon may harvest your own tissue from elsewhere in the septum or another area of your body, like your ribs. Another option is to use synthetic grafting materials that encourage nasal tissue growth.
Refinement of scar tissue is also done, as too much cartilage can impact the appearance of the nose and make it asymmetrical. Your surgeon might need to reposition these or even remove excess tissue in order to narrow the nostrils or reduce the bridge of the nose.
What is the recovery like after a secondary rhinoplasty?
Expect some swelling and slight bruising to occur right after surgery, but it will start to fade within a week’s time. However, it might take as much as a year for swelling to fully dissipate.
Your doctor might prescribe you to wear a splint for one week. Nasal packing is also used for the first couple of days after surgery in order to control bleeding. Any pain or discomfort can be controlled with prescription pain medication.
Though most patients can usually return to work a week after the procedure, exercising is prohibited for at least four weeks. Contact sports should also be avoided for at least six weeks to allow the nasal bones to completely heal.
Is secondary rhinoplasty covered by insurance?
If done for cosmetic purposes, revision rhinoplasty is not usually covered by insurance. However, it can be covered if the secondary rhinoplasty will be used to correct various functions of the nose, such as breathing problems. It is best to check with your insurance company to know their exact coverage.
If you are contemplating on getting a secondary rhinoplasty to correct your previous nose job, Schedule a Free Consultation with one of our cosmetic surgeons here on Face + Body Cosmetic Surgery and we will do our best to assist you.