Rhinoplasty, sometimes called a “nose job” or “nose reshaping” by patients, is a surgical procedure that reshapes or resizes the nose for health or cosmetic reasons. It is the third most common plastic surgery procedure in the United States.
According to data collected by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) there were 217,979 rhinoplasty surgeries performed in 2015, accounting for about 13 percent of the year’s plastic surgery procedures.
Both revision rhinoplasty surgery and the initial rhinoplasty procedure can be used to resolve health problems, such as correcting impaired breathing caused by the structure of the nose. Rhinoplasty is also used to resolve aesthetic problems by enhancing the harmony of the face’s lines and balancing the proportions of the nose.
Rhinoplasty can create dramatic improvements to:
-Nose size and proportion in relation to facial harmony
-Nose width at the bridge, or a profile with visible bumps on the bridge
-The size, shape, and position of the nostrils
-A nasal tip that is bulbous, drooping, upturned, or hooked
There are two major rhinoplasty techniques, open rhinoplasty and closed rhinoplasty.
About Open Rhinoplasty
Open rhinoplasty is performed after an incision is made in the columella (the delicate tissue that separates the nostrils). This allows the surgeon greater access to the tissue throughout the nose. Because it allows increased visibility of the nasal tissue during the operation, an open rhinoplasty is easier for the surgeon to perform. Another advantage is an open rhinoplasty can also allow for more dramatic revision of the shape and proportion of the nose.
The open technique does sometimes lead to more noticeable scarring than the closed rhinoplasty technique. Recovery after rhinoplasty using the open technique can also be more unpredictable and prone to complications than closed rhinoplasty recovery. On the other hand, open rhinoplasty can actually be less traumatic to the nose because the technique gives the surgeon more room to work and requires less modification to other internal nasal structures.
About Closed Rhinoplasty
Closed rhinoplasty involves performing the surgery entirely inside the nose without interfering with the columella. An internal procedure prevents visible scars from showing. The closed rhinoplasty technique does require a facial surgeon with more experience and precision than its counterpart, the open rhinoplasty.
Although the closed rhinoplasty technique does result in minimal scarring, which is inside the nose and therefore not visible, it is also limited in the scope of the revisions it can make to the nose. Closed rhinoplasty recovery time can be easier and more predictable than recovery following rhinoplasty performed with the open technique, but it can also be more traumatic if a surgeon is indelicate or tries to make revisions that are too significant.
Is Open or Closed Rhinoplasty Best for Me?
Each rhinoplasty candidate is unique, so it is impossible to generalize and make a categorical statement about which rhinoplasty technique is better for all or even most patients.
Closed rhinoplasty is typically preferred because of the easier recovery process and the minimal, hidden scars, but there are numerous situations in which an open technique may be better for the patient.
Because it allows for more significant nasal revisions, rhinoplasty candidates seeking a dramatic change, or who need dramatic reconstruction, may prefer an open rhinoplasty.
A skilled plastic surgeon will still be able to minimize scar tissue and the appearance of scars following an open rhinoplasty.
A patient who is only seeking a slight revision, or revisions that are concentrated on the bridge of the nose, and no or only minor revisions desired for the tip of the nose, may be recommended to undergo the more subtle changes of a closed rhinoplasty operation.
Choosing the Right Plastic Surgeon for Your Rhinoplasty
You are a potentially good candidate for rhinoplasty if your facial growth is complete, if you are in good overall health, if you are a non-smoker, and if you have a positive, realistic outlook and goals for what you expect in the improvement of your appearance.
Your facial surgeon can help you determine which technique is best for your rhinoplasty procedure during your initial consultation.
It’s important to clearly communicate your expectations for the results of your rhinoplasty surgery and share your complete health history, including dental history, with your plastic surgeon, so that they can choose the best technique for your health and goals.
It is therefore essential that you choose the right plastic surgeon for your rhinoplasty procedure in particular so that you can be confident in your results.
A plastic surgeon who is skilled and experienced, especially in rhinoplasty, is the difference between glamorous plastic surgery results and a tragic plastic surgery horror story.
If possible, patients should seek out a plastic surgeon who specializes in facial plastic surgeries like rhinoplasty.
Dr. William J. Binder
Dr. William J. Binder is a facial plastic surgery specialist with over three decades of experience with facial plastic surgery.
He is double board certified and has 10 U.S. and global patents on medical and surgical devices and pharmaceuticals and is extensively published across various medical journals.
If you want your rhinoplasty, whether open or closed, performed by one of the world’s leading facial plastic surgeons, contact Dr. Binder’s office today to schedule your consultation.