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Nose surgery (nose job), or rhinoplasty, is performed to change the size and/or shape of the nose. This reshaping is accomplished by carefully removing or rearranging underlying bone or cartilage.

Most cosmetic nose surgeries are performed because the patient desires an improved appearance. However, the surgery is frequently requested to repair injuries, to correct breathing problems or to minimize the increasing disfigurement of the nose that occurs as an individual ages.

Click here to see nose surgery before and after images.


The appropriate age for nose surgery depends on many factors. For children, cosmetic nose surgery should be delayed until facial development reaches maturity. This level of maturity is usually around the age of 16 for girls and 18 for boys. However, nose surgery may be performed at a younger age if a severe breathing problem is present. There is no upper age limit for nose surgery. Nose surgery patients in their 60s and 70s have elected to undergo this procedure with good results.

Since the nose is usually the most defining characteristic of the face, a slight alteration can result in a more pleasing look that compliments other facial features. Technical refinements in surgical procedures have allowed consistently better results; however, patients must recognize that the goal of the surgery is improvement, not perfection.

During your nose surgery consultation in our office, the surgeon assesses the patient’s age, height, skin thickness, ethnic background and shape of other features, such as the forehead, eyes and chin. Nose reconstruction requires a keen, artistic eye as well as technical expertise, so your surgeon utilizes his skills to ensure the contours of your nose conform to the natural shape of your face. Dr. English’s goal is an aesthetically pleasing nose that does not appear to be surgically altered. It is frequently necessary to correct a receding or protruding chin at the same time nose surgery is performed to provide harmony of the facial features.


Nose surgery is performed as an outpatient procedure using general anesthesia or local anesthesia with I.V. sedation. Incisions are usually made inside the nose where they will not be visible. In some cases, an incision is made in the area of the skin separating the nostrils and/or at the base of the each nostril (if narrowing the base of the nose is part of the procedure). Very fine, absorbable sutures are used to close the incisions. The sutures dissolve on their own, usually leaving an imperceptible scar.


At the completion of the surgery, a protective splint is placed on the outside of the nose and a small amount of soft absorbent material is placed inside the nose to maintain stability. The splint and absorbent material are removed six days after the surgery.

Swelling from the surgery usually peaks within 72 hours. Although most of the swelling resolves quickly, some lasts for several months. Bruising may develop in the face, particularly around the eyes, but usually resolves in three to six weeks. The patient may also experience nasal congestion due to swelling which may last four to 12 weeks. Numbness or tenderness may occur in the nasal tip or upper lip and may continue for six months to a year.

Some activities are limited during the weeks following the procedure to allow optimal healing of the nose. Exposure to the sun, physical exertion, and risk of injury must be avoided. Forceful coughing, sneezing, blowing the nose or sniffing should also be avoided for the first few weeks. Contact lenses should not be worn for three to seven days after the procedure. Eyeglasses or sunglasses must be avoided for a minimum of six weeks to three months to prevent pressure on the nose as it heals.

Since resolution of the swelling may be asymmetrical, the final result may not be seen for months. In general, the appearance of the nose continues to improve for a year or more after surgery. It is particularly important to follow instructions after nose surgery to ensure the best result.

If you would like to look and feel your very best, contact us today to schedule a nose surgery (rhinoplasty) consultation with Dr. English. We look forward to seeing you!

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