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A 38-year-old member asked:

Is it possible to have a rhinoplasty without anesthesia?

6 doctor answers12 doctors weighed in
Dr. Paul Weiss
Plastic Surgery 52 years experience
Yes: A rhinoplasty can be performed under local anesthesia. It is more pleasant to have some form of sedation even if it is only by mouth.
Dr. Richard Tholen
Plastic Surgery 41 years experience
Often, "local anesthesia only" is offered by "surgeons" who may not be fully-trained and qualified ABPS-certified plastic surgeons who "operate" in a non-accredited office since they do not have full credentials and capability to utilize ALL anesthesia options. Rhinoplasty often involves bony work in addition to cartilage and soft tissue manipulations, and sedation or general anesthesia is certainly optimal. Local-only would likely be quite disconcerting (painful or even scary) so sedation at least is recommended with the local anesthesia. But most patients would prefer that their surgeon do their best work, which is most efficiently accomplished by having a completely immobile fully pain-free (asleep) patient. Proper anesthesia can offer MUCH better than you may be afraid of!
Feb 9, 2013
Dr. George Pope
Plastic Surgery 40 years experience
Yes: Yes, it's possible, and i've performed it under local anesthesia, but i don't really recommend it. You can't be very heavily sedated without protecting your airway with a special tube and general anesthesia, because you may have trouble with blood going down your throat. If done awake, you need to be awake enough to clear your throat.
Dr. Christopher Khorsandi
Plastic Surgery 22 years experience
Yes: But the vast majority of surgeons will perform it under general anesthesia. It can be quite uncomfortable without sedation or general anesthesia.
Dr. Orrin Ailloni-Charas
Anesthesiology 29 years experience
It can be : Done with only local anesthesia, but it is easier to use general. Under local, the patient will be awake and need to be cooperative. They will remember the experience. With general, you can check out, get the work done, and wake up when your surgeon is finished.
Dr. Richard Pollard
Anesthesiology 30 years experience
You won't like it.: Essentially the plastic surgeon is going to break art of your nose for this operation. It is quite painful and you will want an anesthetic to get through it.
Dr. David Sherris
Facial Plastic Surgery 33 years experience
No: It would hurt too much to do a typical rhinoplasty with no anesthesia.

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Last updated Apr 24, 2015

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