Overhauling Your Look

The Top Pre-Op Nose Job Surgery Questions Answered

What do you need to know before scheduling a nose job surgery? More than 207,000 rhinoplasty surgeries were performed in the United States in 2019, according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons. If you're considering this popular procedure, take a look at the following patient questions.

What Is a Rhinoplasty?

You may know a rhinoplasty by its common name—the nose job. This surgical procedure requires the doctor to modify the bone or cartilage to reshape the nose. A rhinoplasty can change the size, overall shape, or angle of the nose. It can also straighten the bridge of the nose, change the shape of the tip, or narrow the nostrils.

Why Do Patients Choose Rhinoplasty?

The reasons to choose this type of surgical procedure depend on the patient, their preferences, and their medical needs. Some patients need a rhinoplasty to improve breathing or to correct a deviated septum, while others choose this procedure for aesthetic reasons.

Will Medical Insurance Pay for a Rhinoplasty?

The answer to this question depends on your healthcare plan and the reason for the surgery. Most insurance plans won't pay for a purely cosmetic elective procedure. But if there is a medical reason for your nose job, such as to open blocked nasal passages, it's likely your policy will pay for at least some of the costs.

If your plan has a deductible or requires a co-pay, you may have some out-of-pocket expenses—even if the procedure is for medical reasons. Contact your insurer to verify covered services and ask if you need prior authorization. You may also need to choose a specific hospital or surgeon who is in the insurer's network of providers. Out-of-network medical providers may cost you more in uncovered expenses.

How Long Will It Take to Recover From a Rhinoplasty?

Rhinoplasty is typically an outpatient procedure. Provided there are no complications, the surgeon will release you to go home the same day as your rhinoplasty. Even though you can go home almost immediately after the procedure, you can't resume your normal daily activities right away.

Most patients experience discomfort, swelling, and bruising after the surgery. You may also have some drainage or bleeding from the surgical site. The doctor will bandage the area and splint your nose after the procedure. The surgeon will assess your recovery during a follow-up appointment and decide whether to remove the splint.

In general, it can take several weeks for the nose to heal. The surgeon will provide you with a list of restrictions, such as running or other types of activity, for the recovery period. If the surgery was complication-free, you may feel well enough to return to work and other similar activities in a week or two. It may take a month or longer to fully recover or see results.