Oh! My Nose! – Recovering from an Injury with Nose Surgery

If you asked people to name the most iconic episodes in television history, the episode of The Brady Bunch where Marsha gets hit in the face with a football would surely make the top ten. Her nose immediately swells up and she has to decide what she is going to tell her date, who she dumped another guy to go out with. And of course this teaches her a valuable lesson about inner beauty.

Thanks to the magic of television we don’t have to wait long to see that Marsha’s looks would recover. But in the real world it can take weeks for a nose injury to heal to the point that it can be determined whether permanent damage has been done.

Once the swelling from a nose injury goes down, a surgeon will be able to tell if breathing problems will persist and whether the injured person’s looks have been permanently altered. If there are lasting complications, rhinoplasty may be an option.

One of the most frequently asked questions from patients who have suffered an injury to their nose is whether a corrective procedure will be covered by insurance. In most injury cases, the answer is yes, up to a point.

Most insurance policies only cover the cost of plastic surgery that is medically necessary. Anything that goes beyond medical necessity into the realm of cosmetic choice is rarely covered by insurance.

For example, if Marsha Brady had permanent breathing trouble from being hit in the nose with a football, having that corrected would probably be covered by insurance. If she asked the doctor to do something cosmetic, like changing the shape of her nostrils while he was correcting her breathing issues, that would probably need to be paid out of pocket.

To be clear, surgery to correct trauma-induced nose injuries is not the only type of rhinoplasty insurance will cover. There many sound medical reasons for this surgery, including birth defects (such as a cleft lip or palate), a deviated septum, chronic sinus problems, and obstructed breathing (such as sleep apnea).  Sometimes, patients seek rhinoplasty because their nose has been damaged due to a serious illness, such as a brain tumor, rather than an impact injury.

Every nose, and every insurance policy, are different. So, to get an accurate estimate of how much a rhinoplasty procedure might cost out of pocket, and whether some of the cost of the procedure might be covered by insurance, an in-person consultation is necessary.

Posted in: Rhinoplasty

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