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Are Nose Jobs Unsuccessful?

While it’s simply untrue to say that any cosmetic surgery is generally “unsuccessful,” the case remains that the revision rate for rhinoplasties (nose jobs) is an absolutely staggering number. According to Revision by Rivkin, non-surgical rhinoplasty specialists, up to 20% of all surgical rhinoplasty patients end up wanting a revision rhinoplasty procedure within five years of their original surgery.

If you’ve done some research on nose jobs, you know that the surgery is no simple affair. The surgery itself requires either local anesthesia with sedation or general anesthesia, and you’ll have swelling and black-and-blue discoloration of your eyelids and nasal area for a minimum of two to three weeks after the surgery (and the Mayo Clinic notes that swelling of the nose takes even longer to resolve).

So, how can you avoid undergoing such a complex surgery, only to be unhappy with the results? As with any aesthetic alteration, there’s just no guarantee. It’s like hoping for good weather on your wedding day: You can hope, and pray, and wish as much as you want, and be as prepared as possible, but the reality is what will happen. That said, it’s still better to head into the day with an umbrella than without preparation at all.

Of course, the underlying foundation to all of these options is to talk to your surgeon, as much and as often as possible. They’re the only person who can truly give you a solid sense of what to expect when you wake up with a brand-new nose!

How Can You Prepare For The Look of a New Nose?

  1. Try an App: Admittedly, this option is the most low-tech of the choices we’ll address today, but it’s really not a bad idea. The advent of selfie cameras and other appearance-altering apps for iPhones has made it easier than ever to try on a new appearance. “Baby Photoshop” FotoRus can not only whiten your teeth and make your eyes larger, but can show you what you look like with a slimmer nose! As beauty writer Louise Mensch notes, “the only trouble is that once you’ve looked at the new ‘surgically improved’ you, returning to your own real headshot is a bit of a let-down.” While this is certainly not an infallible way to “test-run” a surgery, if you don’t like the way a thinner nose looks on your face, that’s one way to rule out a rhinoplasty!
  2. Look at Photos: Sam Rizk notes that when it comes to rhinoplasty, photos are the key to anticipating success. If your plastic surgeon is unable to show you before-and-after photographs numbering in the tens and hundreds, it’s time to leave and find a new surgeon: “A doctor who refuses to show pictures– which some of them will do– I would walk out the door. Because you don’t know what you’re getting,” says Dr. Rizk. If possible, ask to see the patient’s original inspiration photo or desired aesthetic, so that you can compare it with the actual result. If the photos don’t demonstrate the follow-through you’re looking for, you’re headed down the road to a surgery that might not be worth your time and money.
  3. Virtual Plastic Surgery Simulator: Like the app, no simulator is a perfect match for what your nose job will look like in real life, but online platforms can help give you a good idea. This online platform works for all plastic surgeries, not just rhinoplasties: With the PSS, all you need to do is upload your photo, choose the surgery you’re considering, and the simulator will show you a facsimile version of the final result. It works on iOS, Mac, Android, and Windows, and it’s as easy as downloading the software.
  4. Computer Imaging Software: One question to ask when you’re considering potential plastic surgeons is whether they have a more advanced computer imaging software to use during your consultation: “Some doctor’s offices are equipped with software which they can use to manipulate a digitized replication of your nose. This is a great tool for accurate profile view, however, it is not a great indication of a surgeon’s results,” says Rizk. As with other software tools, pictures of your “future face” are useful only in the sense that they’ll allow you to see what you look like. Of course, there’s still room for surgeon error, so looking at before-and-after photos is equally important.

Remember, this process should take a while. You’ll have your new nose (hopefully) for the rest of your life, so it’s worth time and effort to find a nose and an aesthetic that’s right for you. While wonderful experts in revision rhinoplasty (like Rivkin) certainly exist, the goal is always not to need them!

Do you have questions about how to find the right surgeon for your rhinoplasty, where to look for “nasal” inspiration, or other nose job queries? If so, leave them in the section below, and we’d be happy to help direct your inquiry.

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