Your nose is one of your most noticeable facial features. It serves as your face’s focal point and determines its overall symmetry. Every person has a different face and a different nose. For some people, the nose can be a source of discomfort and insecurity when looking in the mirror. It may not function like it should, or maybe it has some bumps or dents from previous injuries. Genetics can give people overly large or flat noses with no definition. Rhinoplasty, a term which means “nose reshaping,” is one of the most popular cosmetic surgeries available today. It is a surgical option for changing the way the nose works and looks to give patients a more aesthetically pleasing face.
Types of Rhinoplasty
- Primary – This is also known as the original rhinoplasty. It’s the first surgery performed on the nasal structure and can be used to change the internal and/or external nasal bone and cartilage.
- Open/ Closed –The nasal bones and cartilage can be accessed during rhinoplasty by going through the nostrils or by making incisions on the outside of the nose and lifting the soft tissue up and over. The former is known as a closed rhinoplasty and the latter is known as an open rhinoplasty. Open rhinoplasty is used more often because it is an easier surgical method of accessing and reshaping the nasal structure.
- Cosmetic – This is the most common form of rhinoplasty that involves reshaping the external appearance of the nose by adjusting the inside and outside of the nose.
- Functional – Some patients are satisfied with the way their nose looks, but want to fix breathing problems caused by trauma or genetics. Functional rhinoplasty can improve the overall function of the nose without significant alteration of the external cartilage. Repairing a deviated septum from a broken nose is the most common form of functional rhinoplasty.
- Ethnic – Different cultures and ethnicities have different facial features and the nose is no exception. A Caucasian nose doesn’t look the same as an African-American nose or an Asian nose. Ethnic rhinoplasty caters to the unique differences of the patient’s heritage while preserving their individual features.
- Revision – Sometimes patients want to have a second or even a third rhinoplasty surgery. They could want to make subtle changes to their nose, completely reshape it, or repair it after an accident or a botched previous rhinoplasty. This form of rhinoplasty is one of the most difficult for surgeons to perform because they have to work around leftover scar tissue or other remnants of previous surgeries.
The Rhinoplasty Surgery
Depending on the extent and type of rhinoplasty needed, surgery will usually take one to four hours. Dr. Davidson uses open rhinoplasty for most patients, but will use closed rhinoplasty for very minor adjustments. Patients are put under general anesthesia, then the doctor will make the incisions. Most incisions are made inside the nose, but occasionally external incisions will be made where the nostril meets the rest of the face. Once the incisions are made, the soft tissue is lifted up and over the bone and cartilage to give the doctor better access. From there, the doctor will remove, add, or reduce the amount and shaping of the bone and cartilage. Sometimes an implant will be used to provide the correct shaping. Once the internal structure is complete, the doctor will replace the soft tissue and close the sutures.
The Rhinoplasty Recovery
Post-surgery recovery takes about three weeks, but that can vary between patients depending on their propensity to bruise and the extent of surgery required. Most people can return to work after about a week. There will be some bruising and swelling which can be managed with ice packs and pain medication prescriptions from your doctor. He may also use a splint, cast, or tape to protect your nose as it heals. Complete recovery from rhinoplasty surgery can take up to a year.
Your Rhinoplasty Consultation
If you are interested in scheduling an initial consultation with Dr. Christopher Davidson, contact our office at (781) 237-7700 or send us an email to make an appointment. Dr. Davidson is a board-certified, Harvard-trained surgeon with years of experience in facial plastic surgery. He will use the consultation to get to know you as a patient by assessing your physical health and your medical history. He will also discuss your goals for surgery and make a determination if those goals are possible. Above all, Dr. Davidson’s concern is your health and safety, as well as providing the best experience possible. Contact us today to schedule your initial consultation and take the first step toward an increased self-esteem and positive self-image.