Awake Rhinoplasty

Conveniently located to serve the areas of Los Angeles and Beverly Hills

Side view of attractive young woman with perfect skin and dotted lines on her nose stock imageAn Awake Rhinoplasty is a new kind of nose job that’s performed under local anesthesia to shorten recovery time and improve outcomes. Dr. Kenneth Kim and Dream Medical Group are leading the way in a paradigm shift for plastic surgery. By questioning old assumptions and flying in the face of long-held beliefs, Dr. Kim and his colleagues are blazing the trail for a novel approach that avoids the risks attendant to general anesthesia.

Learn the latest developments in the rapidly evolving aesthetic space from a man who is literally leading the charge. The Dream Medical Group blog is a regularly updated chronicle of news and musings from the mind of Dr. Kim and his talented team. 

What is Rhinoplasty?

The classic nose job has been a plastic surgery staple for hundreds of years. Through his long and distinguished career, Dr. Kim has mastered the many nuances of nose surgery. The needs of every nose job can vary widely from patient to patient, and one’s ethnicity may play a large role in whatever aesthetic strategy Dr. Kim ultimately opts for. Korean plastic surgery is of particular interest to Dr. Kim because he specializes in serving the distinct demands of the Asian demographic. 

The simple goal of every nose job has remained refreshingly consistent since the first recorded rhinoplasty was performed 5,000 years ago in ancient Egypt. Rhinoplasty is intended to bring greater harmony and symmetry to the face. Balance and symmetry are intimately tied to human beings’ perceptions of beauty.[1] Rhinoplasty can also relieve chronic congestion by improving nasal patency.


Certainly not. An Awake Rhinoplasty is a nose job in which the patient is only given a local anesthetic to manage discomfort at the surgical site. Twilight sedation is often employed during an “Awake” procedure to help keep the patient calm and compliant during surgery. But, as the name implies, Awake Anesthesia is a novel approach to traditional plastic surgery because the patient is not put to sleep at the outset of the operation; they remain awake and responsive while Dr. Kim does his work. In fact, general anesthesia can be among the riskiest aspects of any surgery, which is why Dr. Kim helped develop an “Awake” alternative.   

Would you like to join the aesthetic avant-garde at Dream Medical Group? Prospective patients who are curious to learn more are encouraged to contact us for a private consultation. Call (213) 700-4297 to book an appointment with Dr. Kim and his team at our luxurious Los Angeles offices.  

Benefits of Being Awake

Local anesthesia with twilight sedation cleverly avoids the complications that can accompany general anesthesia. It’s a difference that the patient will notice as soon as their surgery is over. The first day or two of post-operative recovery is usually spent shaking the side effects of general anesthesia. This is valuable time that might otherwise be invested in the healing process. And, because general anesthesia affects the entire body, including the heart and circulatory system, it can mask the severity of hematoma, which is the internal bleeding that takes place during surgery. This may create a potentially perilous scenario for the recovering patient. 

An Awake Rhinoplasty also enables better results than other approaches, because a shorter, simpler recovery with less bleeding creates less scar tissue, often leading to a smoother, more refined look. 


Ideal candidates for Awake Rhinoplasty seek greater facial symmetry. Moreover, they are thrilled by the prospect of reaping the rewards of an advanced surgical technique. They have “woken up” to persistent drawbacks of unquestioned traditional thinking and they are ready to disrupt the status quo by participating in a pioneering approach to rhinoplasty.


Unlike some aesthetic procedures that tend to be targeted at a particular age and/or gender, rhinoplasty is performed on young and old alike, from teenagers to septuagenarians. There is a limit on how young one ought to be before getting a nose job—around 16 years old for girls and approximately 17 years of age for boys. This lower limit assures that that patient’s bone and cartilage have mostly stopped growing. The patient’s maturity is another important element to consider. 

Your Personal Consultation at Dream Medical Group

newsweek certificateAt Dream Medical Group in Los Angeles, Dr. Kenneth Kim brings together an innovative mix of influences from both Korea and the United States. He first learned about the “Awake” method of plastic surgery while studying in Seoul, a place where plastic surgery has grown by enthusiastic leaps and bounds as Korean culture has developed into a global phenomenon. Here in Southern California, Dr. Kim joins Asian refinement with American-made technology to create a truly novel technique that blends the best of East and West

At your private consultation, Dr. Kim will qualify your candidacy for Awake Rhinoplasty. If you are fit for plastic surgery under local anesthesia, you and Dr. Kim will devise your aesthetic strategy. There are many varieties of nose jobs. The rhinoplasty that’s right for you will be based on your individual bone structure and oriented toward your loftiest aesthetic aspirations. 

Before you leave our Los Angeles offices, an attentive member of our Dream Medical Group staff should supply you with your individualized preparation instructions. Contact us to get the conversation started. Call (213) 700-4297 to speak with one of our helpful representatives. 


Dr. Kenneth Kim was recently recognized by none other than Newsweek as one of America’s Best Plastic Surgeons in 2021 in the category of Rhinoplasty. For Dr. Kim and his team and Dream Medical Group, the award is more than just an honor, it is vindication for taking a bold stance against prevailing attitudes in the name of what he knows to be right. Rather than bending to the influence of outdated, though pervasive ideas about rhinoplasty, Dr. Kim and company have confidently asserted that Awake Rhinoplasty is the superior approach. Once a medical pioneer, Dr. Kim and his colleagues’ innovations have now become mainstream. 

Awake Procedure

There is an assortment of rhinoplasty techniques, each of them aimed at achieving a particular aesthetic outcome. Hence, there are varying degrees of complexity. Depending on the extent of your aspirations, your nose job may take one to two hours, or perhaps longer.

women rhinoplasty before and after stock imageIn an Awake Rhinoplasty, a local anesthetic is injected directly into the surgical site so that it can properly numb the area. The Rhinoplasty procedure itself is highly customized to the patient. In hump reduction and bulbous nose correction, for instance, Dr. Kim will employ measures to make the nose smaller in relation to the face’s other features. Alternatively, so-called short nose rhinoplasty and rhinoplasty augmentation are techniques intended to bring greater structure and definition to the nose through the use of silicone implants and autologous tissue grafts.[2] 

Whatever your personal aesthetic goals, Awake Rhinoplasty will leave you with a quicker, more comfortable recovery that will inevitably give way to flawless results.


Your body will thank you for foregoing general anesthesia. Rather than returning home from surgery all groggy and constipated, you’ll be alert and ready to start your recovery on the right foot. Despite your relative mental clarity, however, we still recommend that you arrange for a “recovery buddy” ahead of time. This will be a trusted friend or family member who volunteers to give you a ride home after surgery. This same buddy should stay with you for your first 24 post-operative hours to make sure you’re safe, comfortable and set up for success.

You should sleep on your back with your head slightly elevated at least until your bandages come off. Avoid strenuous activities for several weeks. And, we ardently implore you to keep all of your follow-up appointments with Dr. Kim so that he can monitor your progress and make adjustments to your recovery regimen, if necessary. 

Awake Rhinoplasty Under Local Anesthesia Leads To:
  • Significantly faster recovery in terms of swelling. This is because general anesthesia decreases blood pressure during surgery but the blood pressure goes back to normal after the anesthesia has worn off. This is not a problem under local anesthesia. 
  • Significantly less pain after surgery because the nerve fibers were blocked by the local anesthesia before surgery.


Some of your rhinoplasty results might be visible immediately, even though they are sufficiently obscured by swelling and bandages. As your incisions heal and any initial scarring begins to recede, your final results will slowly blossom.

Your shorter, smoother recovery should lead to improved results. Awake Rhinoplasty patients are less likely to consider rhinoplasty revision later on.[3]  


  1. Oh, Y. H., Seo, J. W., Oh, S. J., Oum, I. T., Kim, G., Kim, J., Kim, S. Y., Shin, S. W., Park, D., & Kim, K. K. (2016). Correction of Severely Contracted Nose. Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, 138(3), 571–582. 
  2. Jeong, J. Y., Oh, S.-H., Suh, M. K., Kim, C. K., & Kim, K. K. (2014). Effective Use of a Silicone-induced Capsular Flap in Secondary Asian Rhinoplasty. Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Global Open, 2(6), e172. 
  3. Chinski, L., Armijos, J., Arias, J., & Chinski, H. (2014). Rhinoplasty and its effects on the perception of beauty. International Archives of Otorhinolaryngology, 17(01), 047–050. 
  4. ‌Kim, S.-K., & Kim, H.-S. (2013). Secondary Asian Rhinoplasty: Lengthening the Short Nose. Aesthetic Surgery Journal, 33(3), 353–362.×12473105 
  5. ‌Khan, N., Rashid, M., Khan, I., Ur Rehman Sarwar, S., ur Rashid, H., Khurshid, M., Khalid Choudry, U., & Fatima, N. (2019). Satisfaction in Patients After Rhinoplasty Using the Rhinoplasty Outcome Evaluation Questionnaire. Cureus. 
*Results May Vary