Post-traumatic rhinoplasty is a surgical intervention of the nose. As its name suggests, it is used to repair the deformations of the nose following trauma. It can be a deviated, broken nasal septum, a bone fracture to be corrected so that the nose regains a natural and harmonious appearance. But is the result always worth it?
Post-traumatic rhinoplasty: a complex operation
Post-traumatic rhinoplasty requires a meticulous preparation. It is an intervention that generally lasts one or two hours, it is more complex to perform than an aesthetic rhinoplasty. It can be done internally or externally. The surgeon must adapt to the changes in the tissues caused by trauma. This operation may require the use of cartilage or bone grafts for noses that have undergone major deformation.
The surgeon must also know how to adjust his operating strategy in the face of any surprises that may arise during the operation, such as:
a significant deviation or a proven break in the nasal septum
the presence of foreign bodies in the nose
The operation takes place in the clinic under General anaesthesia. It most often requires a night of hospitalization after which a cast will be placed on the nose. Sometimes the surgeon’s intervention can take place on an outpatient basis, this is particularly the case when the post-traumatic rhinoplasty does not involve a bone fracture or a complex graft.
To perform the operation, the surgeon has the choice between several techniques. The chosen technique must adapt to the nose to operate and the observations made before and during the operation. In general, the technique used resembles that of aesthetic rhinoplasty, it is readjusted according to the problems encountered.
Thus cartilage grafts can be performed on the nasal septum and the sides of the nose. The surgeon can also make a graft composed of cartilage and temporal aponeurosis. This graft makes it possible to hide the irregularities of the nasal bridge. In some cases, the volumetric loss involves the costal cartilage removal.
In addition, a resection of excess bone or persistent cartilage can be performed. The surgeon may also be required to make nasal tip cartilage sutures to change its shape. A straightening of the nasal septum is also sometimes necessary.
Post-traumatic rhinoplasty: positive results
Generally, post-traumatic rhinoplasty gives a positive result. Defects caused by trauma are often corrected. However, it is sometimes necessary to wait a year, after the edema has disappeared, to see the final result.
When the nose is repaired on an emergency basis, the displaced nose fracture can be surgically reduced within the first week. In this case, the success rate is relatively satisfactory and is observed quite quickly.
When the results of this first surgery are less good, it is necessary to wait several months to carry out deeper corrective surgery. The goal is to let the bone heal before performing rhinoplasty with osteotomies: this technique restores a more rectilinear contour by realigning the cartilage. We then speak of secondary rhinoplasty. Following the operation, the patient may sometimes feel difficulty breathing or see edema appear. However, these side effects disappear after a while.