What Is a Broken Nose?
A broken nose, also known as a nasal fracture, refers to a crack in the bone in a person’s nose, which is called the ethmoid bone. This bone serves as the bridge or the roof over a person’s nose. The rest of the nose is mostly cartilage and the two nasal passages. When a broken nose occurs, the person may notice bruises, blood, or they may be suffering from pain when breathing through their nose. Their nose may look askew or unaligned with the rest of their face. Depending on the severity of the injury, broken nose surgery may be required.
Common Causes of a Broken Nose
A person’s nose can break for a variety of different reasons, including any physical force to the facial area. Automobile accidents, contact sports, as well as trips and falls are some of the most common causes of a broken nose.
Dealing with the Aftermath of a Broken Nose
When someone has a broken nose, it is generally advised that they see their doctor immediately. A doctor will be able to tell the patient if their nose is, in fact, broken. When examining their nose, the doctor will look for bruises, bleeding, and ascertain if the patient experiences any pain when breathing through their nose. While these are common signs of injury, they do not necessarily mean that the patient has a broken nose.
A doctor may recommend what’s known as broken nose surgery, also known as a rhinoplasty, a procedure that involves realigning and reshaping the bones in the person’s nose. If the person is suffering from breathing complications because of their injury, the doctor may suggest a septorhinoplasty, a type of reconstructive surgery that reshapes the bones in the nose, while fixing the nasal passages to allow the air to flow through.
Going Through with Broken Nose Surgery
If a person needs broken nose surgery, they will need to find an otolaryngologist or a plastic surgeon that specializes in nose and facial reconstruction in their area. The doctor will help the patient understand what type of broken nose surgery is needed. If it’s been less than two weeks since the original injury, the surgeon should be able to reposition the patient’s nose so that it looks the same as it did before. If it’s been more than two weeks since the original injury, the surgeon may ask the patient to wait up to three months until part of the patient’s nose has begun to heal. Waiting longer than two weeks also allows the surgeon to reconstruct the nose in a way that may alter the person’s appearance.
Broken nose surgery is performed on an outpatient basis, and no overnight care is typically needed. The patient will need to arrange some type of transportation after the surgery. No fluids or food should be consumed up to six hours before the surgery. After the surgery is complete, the patient will need to rest for several days. According to MedicineNet, any swelling, discomfort or pain should subside within the next seven to ten days. MedlinePlus also recommends icing the nose area for 20 minutes a day two to three times a day during this period.
Overall, broken nose surgery is a noninvasive procedure with few risks or side-effects. When a person suffers a facial injury, some type of surgery may be the only way to resolve the issue.
Contact the Royal Centre of Plastic Surgery for more information on rhinoplasty procedures by filling out the form on the right, or call us directly at 1-855-637-1733.