Nasal trauma can lead to a broken nose. This can be a fracture in the nasal bones and/or cartilage and sometimes causes a spicule (a small bony bump on the nose). Trauma can lead to nasal obstruction (difficulty breathing through the nose) and/or cause the nose to look crooked or deformed.
Patients who sustained nasal trauma should be seen right away especially if they have any difficulty breathing through their nose. If there were multiple injuries or loss of consciousness (“black out”), patients should be seen in the Emergency Room. Otherwise, it may be appropriate to be seen in the office setting.
A broken nose can be “re-set” via a closed reduction (no incisions) within 2.5 weeks of the injury. However, children heal faster and therefore have an even narrower window to repair their nasal injury acutely. After the window to reset the nose closes, patients should wait at least 6 months before undergoing corrective surgery, but should be seen by a rhinoplasty surgeon for evaluation.