Rhinoplasty, more commonly referred to as a nose job, is one of the most frequently performed cosmetic surgery procedures to date. Though common, the motivating factor behind a patient’s decision to undergo a rhinoplasty procedure varies. Some undergo this surgery to correct an asymmetry, while others require this procedure because they may be experiencing breathing difficulties. Whatever the reason may be, taking time to thoroughly understand the procedure will help you better determine a result that is best suited for you.
Here, at The Plastic Surgery Clinic, we perform 75 to 100 rhinoplasty procedures per year. The most common reasons why my patients undergo this procedure are:
1. Cosmetic Enhancement
One of the most common and best known reasons for undergoing rhinoplasty is to improve the external appearance of the nose. Many patients consult me because they are concerned about a slight bump, otherwise known as a dorsal hump, or an asymmetry of the nose, either with their nostrils or upper bridge. In most cases, aesthetic deformities have likely bothered a patient for many years, which is why correcting this concern is a common motivation for many of the rhinoplasty surgeries I perform.
2. Medical – Improve Breathing Functionality
While aesthetic deformities are among the most common motives to undergo rhinoplasty surgery, I see many patients who have significant problems with breathing. Such difficulties can occur either through one nostril or both and are often a lifelong source of discomfort for patients. For example, they may have been born with a deformity within the nose, or developed a problem as they grew up.
A very common issue I correct is a deviated septum, a condition in which the septum, or bone and cartilage that separate the nostrils, sits off to one side of the middle. Patients with a deviated septum have one nasal passage that is narrower than the other, which can interfere with even air flow when breathing. Other reasons for treating functional rhinoplasty may include irregularities in other areas of the nose like the internal and external nasal valves and the turbinates that can similarly impede nasal airflow.
3. Correction of Injury
Nasal fractures, or broken noses, resulting from facial injuries can be another reason why patients come to me to perform rhinoplasty surgery. When an accident results in a broken nose, there is more than just appearance to consider. Aside from having an asymmetry that needs to be corrected, nasal fractures can also bring forth breathing difficulties, as a result of damage through accident or trauma.
While some broken noses can be resolved with a basic alignment procedure, in most cases, surgery is needed to restore full functionality and appearance to the nose. And, depending on the severity of the break, one or more procedures may be required.
4. Revision Rhinoplasty
There are a number of patients who have come to me after already undergoing rhinoplasty surgery with another plastic surgeon. These patients continue to have some areas of concern with the overall appearance of their nose that were not corrected during their first procedure. In other cases, some patients see deformities that were not present before their first surgery and have arisen as a result of that surgery. Some of these deformities could even cause breathing problems that were never there before. When I see these patients, it’s important to understand why their initial rhinoplasty surgery has failed, which, in most cases, is because their pervious surgeon failed to recognize a deformity prior to the procedure.
Revision rhinoplasty is one of the most difficult surgeries to perform. The reason? The structures that were natively present in the nose have been altered, and in some cases, some of these structures have been removed completely. Moreover, the significant amount of scar tissue, as a result of the first rhinoplasty procedure, can also make revision rhinoplasty more difficult to perform.
Above all, revision rhinoplasty is not only aimed to correct any deformities brought on by the first surgery, but also to improve the overall function of the nose to ensure the patient continues to breathe properly.
Should you decide to undergo a rhinoplasty procedure, whatever your motivation, be sure to consult with a highly qualified, board certified rhinoplasty surgeon that specializes in all areas of rhinoplasty and facial reconstruction. Together, both of you will be able to determine an end result that not only benefits the functionality of your nose, but also meets your aesthetic goals.
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