These are the questions that I am asked every day during the Non-Surgical Rhinoplasty consultations. Since I hear them on a regular basis, I thought that I would address them here in a bit more depth than I usually do during the consultation.
1. It really doesn’t hurt, for the most part. What that means is that, although the 15 Minute Nose Job is an injection procedure, the pain of it depends on the density of nerve endings in the area that is being injected. The part of the nose between the eyebrows doesn’t have a lot of nerve endings, so the injection doesn’t hurt there. As we get closer to the tip of the nose, however, we encounter ever more sensitive skin. The result is that, when the Non Surgical Rhinoplasty procedure involves the tip of the nose, it does hurt. When we have to adjust the appearance of the tip, I commonly offer patients a choice of dental block (injection of Septocaine under the top lip to completely numb the area) or numbing cream. The downside to the dental block is that your upper lip feels numb and fat for 2 or 3 hours. Most people choose the cream, but it does hurt during the minute or so that I am injecting.
2. If you do the temporary version of the 15 Minute Nose Job, the Radiesse will last about 10 months (it varies between 8 and 12 months, depending on the person). When it dissolves, it is gone from the body. Since it is made of calcium, there are no harmful byproducts left over. Because there is no trace left behind, if you change your mind and want to have surgical rhinoplasty, I do not see any reason to believe that there would be a problem. There are no scientific studies documenting this because the Non Surgical Rhinoplasty procedure is still relatively new (I have been doing it for about 4 years and other doctors have picked up on it only within the last year or so). I have, however, spoken to surgeons who have operated on patients who have had their nose injected with a temporary filler and they report no difference from patients who have had no injections.
3. The 15 Minute Nose Job procedure does not have any effect on breathing through your nose. The filler (either Radiesse or Artefill) goes right under the skin and is too superficial too ever have an effect on the breathing passages.
4. I have never seen an allergic reaction to Radiesse and I have done several thousand injections. In speaking to my colleagues on the Radiesse Education Faculty, I have not heard of any allergic reactions.
5. None of my 500 Non Surgical Rhinoplasty patients has ever developed lumps or granulomas. If injected properly, Radiesse does not leave lumps. It is a smooth and natural filler that blends into the skin. It must be injected into the correct depth and in the correct amount, however. If Radiesse is injected too superficially, or if too much is injected all at once, lumping is a possibility.
6. The only side effects that I have ever encountered from this procedure are temporary redness, swelling or bruising at the areas of injection. These always resolve with a little time. If the redness persists longer than 2 weeks, I have treated it successfully with the YAG vascular laser. Bruising is very rare. I prevent most cases by using Arnica Montana after every Non Surgical Rhinoplasty. Most swelling is very minor and resolves by the next day or two. In the two or three cases where swelling persisted longer than several days, I treat with a five day course of steroids and it disappears.
7. Neither Radiesse nor Artefill migrate once they are in the skin. Both fillers are great at integrating into the skin and becoming part of the tissue. The injected material behaves like scaffolding in the tissue, attracting skin cells to grow around and through the material. This process takes about a week. As a result of it, the Radiesse or Artefill becomes fully anchored in the skin and does not move or migrate. During the first week, prolonged pressure on the area that has been injected can result in some movement of the injected material. This is why my patients are instructed not to wear sunglasses for a week and a half after the 15 Minute Nose Job procedure.