How does a septoplasty or rhinoplasty affect your sense of smell?

Doctor's Answers (2)

There is an extremely small, theoretical risk of permanently losing your sense of smell, although I have not personally encountered such a case before. Indeed, understanding the anatomy and physiology of the sense of smell, it would more likely than not, improve it. 

That said, you may experience temporary congestion that can last up to 2 weeks following rhinoplasty. This will impair your ability to detect smells. 

May I also suggest that if preserving your sense of smell is a serious consideration, avoid using implants or any foreign material. Infection and rejection due to implant usage can impair your sense of smell. 

After the septoplasty or rhinoplasty, for about  2 weeks or so you will experience nasal congestion, blood stained mucus during the recovery period.  This will lead to temporary loss of your sense of smell due to the nasal obstruction. 

Thereafter, the risk of loss of the sense of smell after the surgery (that lasts <6 mths)  is uncommon, and has been reported to occur in  <1% of patients. 

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