A rhinoplasty, or nose job, is one of the most frequently requested Toronto facial cosmetic surgery procedures. As more and more busy people are choosing to travel for their rhinoplasty surgeon of choice, a common question arises: is it safe to fly after your rhinoplasty surgery? While most patients can safely fly 48 hours after rhinoplasty surgery, it is advisable to wait until you’ve discussed your overall health and details of your procedure with your surgeon, before scheduling your flight. Certain health factors and practical considerations should always be considered before engaging in any activities directly after a rhinoplasty surgery.
The primary risk associated with flying immediately after your procedure is bleeding. While in most cases, postoperative bleeding is minimal, in some instances, minor seepage and bleeding may occur, and lasts for a few days or longer. If a patient is at high risk for bleeding, or develops persistent nausea after surgery which can lead to vomiting, it would be advised to put off flying until they are feeling well and symptom-free. Your facial cosmetic surgeon should then let you know when you are once again ready to safely board your flight to return home or set off on a relaxing vacation.
In addition, the pressure changes experienced when flying can aggravate sinus pressure and edema in the nasal passages. A sensation of pressure and congestion can make the first few days after a rhinoplasty uncomfortable, therefore, flying early in recovery may aggravate swelling so you may wish to post pone your trip until 1-2 weeks following your rhinoplasty surgery after a significant amount of swelling has subsided.
Even when we haven’t recently undergone nasal surgery, flights can leave us feeling congested and battling cold symptoms. Flying may increase the risk of infection as re-circulated, dry air may expose the nasal passages to airborne bacteria and dry them out, leading to redness and irritation of mucous membranes. Your surgeon may prescribe an antibiotic to mitigate risks.
In addition to the aforementioned risks, flying too soon after your procedure may also result in an increase in swelling both during and after your flight due to the lack of air pressure on board the plane. While often this edema resolves itself within a few hours, in some cases it can persist for up to three months, delaying your recovery process.
Many patients fly in from outside of the Toronto area to see Dr. Philip Solomon, a leading rhinoplasty specialist. Out of town patients typically make arrangements to stay anywhere from a 4vdays to a week in order to attend their one-week post-op appointment to have their splint removed, and to allow them to relax for a few days before boarding a flight again.
In the event that you must fly shortly after your procedure, there are some easy ways to help keep your new nose as comfortable as possible. Nasal spray can help reduce the risk of a nosebleed while on board. Chewing gum may also help to reduce congestion in your sinuses and ears. Ask your surgeon which medications are safe for you to take when targeting swelling, pressure or other discomfort.
For more information about rhinoplasty surgery, or to arrange a consultation with Dr. Solomon, please contact us at 905-764-7799 to schedule your consultation at the Solomon Nasal and Facial Plastic Surgery Centre in Thornhill.
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In order to best assist you, we require all cosmetic patients to schedule a virtual or in-person consultation. There is a fee of $100 plus HST for all consultations. Your consultation fee will be credited towards your procedure and/or treatment. To schedule a consultation, please complete the attached form or call our office at 905-764-7799. We look forward to hearing from you.