It’s not unusual for patients to have difficulty breathing through their nose following surgery. In most cases, this is related to normal post-operative swelling and resolves quickly. In some cases, crusting and scabbing within the nasal passages may also contribute to this problem.
The problem is often related to the type of procedure performed. For instance, when septal work or large dorsal humps are removed, this problem seems more likely. In the vast majority of cases, breathing difficulty resolves in two to three weeks as swelling resolves. In a small percentage, swelling may persist for four to six weeks following rhinoplasty.
In a small percentage of patients, breathing problems may be permanent and related to structural changes in the nose. When this situation arises, secondary nasal surgery may be necessary.
If you’re considering rhinoplasty surgery, consultation with a board certified plastic surgeon with rhinoplasty experience is important. This surgeon should not only focus on your aesthetic result but your functional result as well.