What to Do Before Rhinoplasty Surgery

Rhinoplasty is a procedure that corrects or changes the shape of the nose. It can be done for cosmetic reasons or to help with breathing problems. Rhinoplasty can address problems by making changes to the skin around the nose, cartilage, or bone. Check out our full guide to rhinoplasty.

Most people focus on learning what to expect after surgery, but to give yourself a head start on recovery, you should start sooner. Get yourself ready for a safe and seamless surgery by first learning about how to prepare for rhinoplasty.

The Week Before Rhinoplasty

  • Get lots of rest. Your body needs energy to heal after surgery. Being well rested will set you up for a more comfortable recovery and the best healing results.woman at home using phone and laptop
  • Keep your face clean. It’s very important to keep your skin clean and clear prior to surgery. Wash your face twice every day with a gentle cleanser. You can gently exfoliate every other day also, to help get rid of dead skin.
  • Get extra hydrated. In the days leading up to your rhinoplasty, drink more water than usual—about twice as much as you usually do. It’s important to keep your body hydrated for your surgery.
  • Plan ahead. You’ll need a ride home from surgery. Rhinoplasty is a same-day surgery, also called an outpatient surgery. After the procedure and a short period of observation to make sure you’re doing well, you’ll get to go home, but it won’t be safe for you to drive or manage other transportation without support right after surgery. Plan ahead and make sure you have a reliable ride ready for you.
  • Have your medications ready. Talk to your doctor about what prescription, over-the-counter medications, cold compresses, ointments, or flushes you may need after surgery and have them ready at home before you have the procedure.
  • Prep your meals ahead of time. It can take weeks to recover fully from rhinoplasty and to get back to your regular routine. Make things easier on yourself by preparing some meals in advance if you can, so you can focus on relaxing and recovering after the surgery.
  • Talk to your doctor! Make sure you understand what over-the-counter medicines you can and can’t take after surgery and make sure you understand all your surgical instructions.

The Day Before Surgery

  • Fast before surgery. For rhinoplasty surgery, you’ll be under general anesthesia. For safety reasons, it’s very important not to eat or drink anything after midnight the day before your surgery. Preparing ahead of time by drinking extra water before your fast begins will help you feel good and stay healthy.
  • Don’t wear cosmetics. Make-up and other cosmetics can cause irritation during surgery. Wash your face in the morning and don’t wear any cosmetics the day of your surgery.
  • Choose the right clothes. You’ll change into a surgical gown for the rhinoplasty itself and then you’ll change back into your own clothes afterwards. You’ll want to make sure the clothes you choose are comfortable and won’t affect your sensitive post-surgery nose. This means you should wear a shirt with buttons that you won’t have to pull over your head.

What to Avoid Before Rhinoplasty

There are also some things you should avoid before rhinoplasty.woman relaxing at home

  • Don’t smoke. You know smoking is bad for you, but it’s an especially bad idea leading up to and after surgery. Smoking can cause blood vessels to become constricted and reduce oxygen flow. This can set you up for poor healing following surgery, even increasing the chances of skin loss and scarring. Smoking also increases chances of a poor anesthesia reaction and bleeding or infection problems.
  • Don’t drink. Don’t drink in the days leading up to surgery. Alcohol is bad for the immune system and also can leave you dehydrated. It can set you up for a poor recovery after surgery.
  • Don’t use topical creams. About four to five days before surgery, don’t use creams that contain Retin-A, salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, and other over-the-counter medicated creams. Stick with a simple cleanser and talk to your doctor if you’re unsure what you should use.
  • Stick to the shade. Stay out of the sun and tanning beds. UV light can damage the skin and make healing more difficult.
  • Avoid certain medications. There are some medications that should be avoided before any surgery because they can cause reactions with anesthesia or impact blood flow and blood clotting. Always talk to your surgeon about what you can and cannot take, but it’s usually recommended to stop taking blood-thinning medications like Aspirin and coumadin, Celebrex and Plavix a week before surgery. Some supplements should be avoided, including Vitamin E supplements, ginkgo, ginseng, fish oil, St. John’s Wort, and others.

Prepare Yourself and Talk to an Expert

It’s important to take any surgery seriously so that you can minimize risks and optimize the outcome. A good recovery depends on preparing your body and your mind in advance. We know that each patient has unique needs. Dr. Matt Hershcovitch has extensive experience with rhinoplasty procedures and helping patients prepare for successful surgeries.

Contact our office today for your consultation.