What is Rhinoplasty?
The nose, a prominent facial feature, usually helps determine the overall attractiveness of one’s face. A nose that is unattractive, misshapen or out of proportion, whether seen in frontal or profile view, will distract the looker from an otherwise beautiful or handsome face. Additionally, a nose that is always blocked makes breathing more difficult and uncomfortable.
Rhinoplasty is a surgical procedure that re-shapes the outside of the nose to provide better balance with the rest of the face, and also improves the breathing passages that reduce nasal stuffiness and sinus headaches. The procedure involves correcting the deformities of the nose by removing, re-arranging or re-shaping bone and cartilage.
Effects of Rhinoplasty
Appearance can be improved for those people who are dissatisfied with the shape and size of their nose. An unacceptable appearance of the nose may occur because of inherited nasal shape or acquired deformities may occur as a result of trauma. Functional improvement of breathing difficulties can also be accomplished through septoplasty (correction of deviated septum), or reduction of excessive tissues (turbinates) inside the nose. Rhinoplasty will create a more pleasing look and also boost your self-confidence.
Candidates for Rhinoplasty
Both men and women are candidates for rhinoplasty, assuming that facial and nasal growth is complete, and especially if they have any of the following symptoms:
Your nose appears too large for your face.
There is a bump on the nasal bridge when viewed in profile.
Your nose seems too wide.
The tip of your nose appears to droop or plunge.
The tip of your nose is too thick or enlarged.
Your nostrils are excessively flared.
Your nose is crooked or off-center, or has changed its shape after an injury.
You have difficulty breathing through one or both nostrils.
Ideal patients should be realistic about their ideas on how their nose should look like. Patients seeking a subtle, natural improvement that appears harmonious with their other facial characteristics are usually the most satisfied.
Your surgeon will take your medical history and ask you questions regarding your general health, especially as it relates to your nose. You will be asked to point out features of your nose that you wish to improve and will perform a gentle examination of the nose, in addition to assessing the skin quality, size and shape of your nose in relation to your other facial features. Photographs and digital images will allow you and our surgeon to evaluate the appropriate procedures that will give you the best results. There are times when other procedures like chin augmentation or lip enhancement may help in achieving a more pleasing appearance and profile.
Rhinoplasty is usually performed under IV sedation or general anesthesia.
Below are the different types of Rhinoplasty Procedures:
In most cases involving a reduction in shape or size of the nose or removal of a hump, small incisions are placed inside the lining of the nose.
In some cases, the internal incisions may be joined by making a small external incision across the columella, the skin bridge between the two nostrils near your upper lip.
The skin of the nose is separated from the underlying skeleton of bone and cartilage. The bone and cartilage are then sculpted and reshaped, either by removing areas of excess, or by building up other areas, usually with cartilage taken from the nasal septum itself. Patients who have a deviated septum may benefit by correction of this problem, which is also done through incisions inside the nostril. After the framework of the nose has been sculpted to your desired goals, the skin and soft tissues are re-draped over the surface, and the internal incisions are then closed. In cases where the nostrils flare, a small external incision may be placed at the junction between the nose and the skin of the upper lip to narrow the flared appearance. The resulting scar will be hidden in the natural skin fold at the base of the nose.
After surgery, a lightweight external splint is applied to maintain the new shape of the nose and to protect the nasal bones, if they have been fractured and narrowed. This splint is removed within a week. Internal nasal splints may be inserted at the time of surgery to protect the septum. These are removed within a week. There is always some stuffiness of the nose, especially when work has been done on the nasal septum.
It generally takes about one to two weeks for a patient to recover. Normal activities can be resumed within two to three weeks’ time.
Pain is minimal and is controlled with medications. Bruising may occur around the eyes, but will fade within a few days. Discoloration usually disappears within a couple of weeks.
Complications are usually infrequent and minor when rhinoplasty is performed by a qualified plastic surgeon. As with any other procedure, there is always a possibility of complications such as infection, nosebleed, or a reaction to the anesthesia. You can minimize your risks by following your surgeon’s instructions both before and after surgery.
Post-surgery, small burst blood vessels may appear as tiny red spots on the skin's surface. These are usually minor but may be permanent. As for scarring, when rhinoplasty is performed from inside the nose, there is no visible scarring at all. When an "open" technique is used, or when the procedure calls for the narrowing of flared nostrils, the small scars on the base of the nose are usually not visible. Other scars near the bridge of the nose can come from sculpture of the nasal bones from an external approach.
Rarely does a second procedure occur. Though a corrective surgery may be required, for example, to correct a slight deformity, the procedure is usually minor. Such cases are unpredictable and happen even to patients of the most skilled surgeons.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Who is a good candidate for Rhinoplasty?
A: Any man or woman can undergo rhinoplasty as long as he or she is in good health and has realistic expectations on the procedure.
Q: How should I prepare for the consultation with a surgeon?
A: Be prepared to answer any question regarding your medical history and get ready to point out what features you wish to improve. It would be helpful if you provide photographs that will allow you and your surgeon to evaluate the appropriate procedures needed.
Q: Is Rhinoplasty done for cosmetic reasons only?
A: Aside from enhancing your facial appearance, rhinoplasty can also improve your breathing passages in order to reduce nasal stuffiness and sinus headaches.
Q: Will there be obvious scars from the procedure?
A: During the procedure, only small incisions will be made so the resulting scars will be hidden in the natural skin fold at the base of the nose. And there is no visible scarring when rhinoplasty is performed from inside the nose.
Q: How long is the recovery period?
A: Normally, it would take about one to two weeks for a patient to recover from rhinoplasty. You can go back to work and resume other normal activities within two to three weeks.