Full recovery after a rhinoplasty depends on several factors. This includes the type of rhinoplasty performed. Most standard rhinoplasties include some modification of the tip of the nose, reduction of a hump on the nose, and cutting the nasal bone so as to narrow the nose. If only minor modifications of the nose are made then the recovery should be less. When modification is made to the tip of the nose, tip swelling can remain, to some degree, for a few months. This can be dependent also on the thickness of the overlying skin. In general, the thicker the skin the longer it will take for the swelling to subside. Normally, the last part of the nose to fully achieve its postoperative appearance is the tip of the nose. When the nasal bones are cut, a patient can develop a black eye appearance. Normally, this resolves in one to two weeks.
In general, it is safe to say that probably 80% of the improvement of the nose will be noticed in the first four to six weeks. The last 20% can take up to three and possibly four months to fully resolve. During the recovery, it is important that you follow the directions of your plastic surgeon. As these tissues are healing, anything that would normally make your face turn red can prolong the swelling. It is important to follow your plastic surgeon’s directions on the limitations of your activity following a rhinoplasty.