Q. I am about to have a rhinoplasty and I’m very concerned about the time of recovery and the pain. How long should it take for me to recover, and do you really think I’m not going to have pain? My doctor told me there’s minimal to no pain with the surgery and I just can’t believe it!
A. Every patient I tell they are not going to have pain looks at me incredulously and must be thinking, “He’s a liar!”
When they come back after surgery, they say, “I didn’t really have any pain Dr. Wolf.”
I’ve been doing rhinoplasty surgery for more than 30 years, and I still cannot believe how little pain there is with this operation. Immediately after surgery, patients will have some discomfort. But usually within one week, when the cast is removed, patients may return to their normal activity without sun exposure or exercise. Patients may travel by airplane within eight days.
I don’t recommend that patients go on a major vacation within that time frame, since they will be limited to how much sun they can take and how much exercise they can do. The inflammation of the nose will continue for up to one year. I frequently tell my patients that if they have a major activity, then they should give themselves one month for the swelling to go down.
Rhinoplasty surgery is a very satisfying operation with minimal pain and discomfort. For those patients who wish to have this done, one week after the surgery will generally be OK to return to school or work. You need at least a month’s recovery for a major event.
As always, you should consult your own physician as to what he or she recommends in your recovery.
Dr. Carlos Wolf is a partner in Miami Plastic Surgery and is board certified. Email questions to Cwolf@miamiplasticsurgery.com.