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Surgical vs. Non-surgical Nose Jobs: Benefits and Risks of Both

So, you are considering getting rhinoplasty but want to explore your options. On the one hand, a surgical nose job seems invasive and honestly…kind of scary. On the other hand, you are worried that you might not get the results you are looking for with a non-surgical nose job.

These are extremely common thoughts and concerns so, we are going to take the time to look at the benefits, risks, and recovery involved with a surgical vs. non-surgical rhinoplasty.

Surgical and Non-surgical Nose Job Procedure Differences

A surgical or traditional rhinoplasty involves restructuring and reshaping the nose internally. This procedure is performed by accessing the bones, tissues, and cartilage of the nose with incisions.

It is performed within the nostrils (closed procedure) or by placing an incision on the strip of tissue that separates the nostrils (open procedure).

The recovery time for this procedure is generally quick (one to two weeks, healing can continue for the next one to three years. Downtime and healing is dependent on the type of procedure you receive.

Non-Surgical rhinoplasty is performed by injecting fillers into the nose to smooth bumps on the bridge, make the nose more symmetrical, improve the look of the tip of the nose, or create other subtle changes. There is no downtime for this procedure and you can return to work immediately after.

Surgical Rhinoplasty Benefits


The most significant benefit of a surgical rhinoplasty is that the results last a lifetime. It is ideal for those who want to drastically change the look of their nose, forever.

For those who want to revise things like large nostrils, a large drooping tip, large humps, or an extremely crooked nose, this procedure may be the way to go.

Surgical Rhinoplasty Risks

Now, we said that the permanence of this procedure was a benefit but, if you do not like the result of your nose job, it could be a major and costly downside.

Because this is surgery, you will be put under anesthesia. This increases the chance of complications. Now, if you work with a seasoned facial plastic surgeon who has performed their fair share of nose augmentation, the risk of complications is reduced.

Again, because this is a surgical procedure, you will find that the possible risks are a bit more serious than with the non-surgical option.

Other risks include:


  • Infection
  • Poor healing or scarring
  • Numbness or pain
  • Nasal septal perforation
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Skin discoloration and swelling


Non-surgical Rhinoplasty Benefits

non-surgical-nose-jobThis procedure is ideal for those who want to see subtle changes to their nose.

With this treatment, you will not have to have incisions that run the risk of scarring and the results are immediate.

As we said, there is also no recovery time for a liquid nose job and it takes less than an hour to complete the injection process.

Non-surgical Rhinoplasty Risks and Downsides

The biggest downside of using fillers to alter the appearance of the nose is that they will eventually be absorbed by the body.

Essentially, results will not last forever and you will need to get injected again to maintain the look you achieved originally. Injections will normally last anywhere from 8 months to 2 years.

Recommended Read: Restylane Silk, Juvederm, and Radiesse—Oh My! Your Guide to Cosmetic Fillers

This procedure also will not be able to completely change the shape of the nose.

For most people, the only side effect of this procedure is some redness and sensitivity in the area of the injection a day or two after the procedure.

Minor side effects could also include:

  • Slight bruising in the area of injection
  • Minor swelling
  • Filler migration
  • Nausea

Serious side effects are rarely seen with this procedure, but it is still important to know what they are. More serious side effects of injections include:

  • Tissue death
  • Vascular issues
  • Vision loss

It is important to work with a facial plastic surgeon who will take the time to evaluate which procedure is right for you. They will look at the structure, bone, and cartilage in your nose and take your desired goals into account so you can get the best results.

If you are interested in discussing your rhinoplasty, click below to schedule a consultation with the Vargas Face and Skin Center.

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