Q: Dr. Eppley, I have two questions about rhinoplasty. First, is there any leeway in the 7 day recovery time? And the second one is I have seen that if you have trouble breathing, insurance may pay for some of the procedure. Is that true? I ask because my nose is a little crooked to the right and I feel like there is a big difference between the left and right side as far as breathing goes.Thanks.

A: Depending upon how one chooses to define recovery, only the first phase of a rhinoplasty is done at one week after surgery. That is when the nasal tapes and splints are removed. But that is far from when one has a full recovery from the procedure. But that is certainly the most obvious appearance part of it due to the external nasal dressing.

If one has breathing problems in which deranged anatomy is evident in a CT scan, then a predetermination with your insurance can be filed to see if they will pay for the functional or breathing part of the surgery. An insurance predetermination can not be filed without a recent CT scan report. The purpose of a predetermination letter is to provide your health insurance carrier with the information so they can determine if you qualify. But insurance does not cover any part of a rhinoplasty that changes the external shape of the nose.

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis, Indiana