Austin Texas Board Certified Plastic Surgeon

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The link between nausea and bruising in rhinoplasty

Bruising occurs when blood seeps out of the blood vessels and gets trapped in the body’s soft tissues. This occurs as a normal occurrence in surgery and some continues to weep out in the first day or more of recovery.  When you are nauseated and retch or vomit you create a temporary increase in pressure in the blood vessels, especially in the head and face.  This results in pushing more blood out of the blood vessels into the surrounding muscles, fat, and skin thus resulting in more bruising.  So by limiting nausea we can reduce bruising.  Here are some ways to accomplish nausea reduction in which patients participate.

  • Emend – An Rx taken before surgery
  • Zofran – An RX taken after surgery, pair it if needed with the pain medication. See below.
  • Avoid eating a lot of solid food the day of surgery after the surgery. I suggest sticking to clears and crackers, dry toast.  Heavy food in the stomach can worsen nausea.
  • Avoid excess pain medication – This is a delicate balance because pain can raise the blood pressure too.
  • Take pain medication with some food – Again there is a delicate balance here because while crackers and toast are mild, too much can lead to nausea. May also need to take the nausea medications at similar times to reduce narcotic associated nausea.
  • Avoid swallowing blood – sometimes there is a small amount of oozing that drips back to the back of the throat. While it might seem impolite or untidy it is best to spit this out into a piece of tissue or into a cup. Blood in the stomach can cause nausea.

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