If you’re having what’s called an open rhinoplasty, the surgeon will make an incision (about 6 millimeters long) in the skin between the nostrils. “Open rhinoplasty is a very common technique, where the skin is lifted upward like the hood on a car,” says Dr. Ronald Schuster, a Baltimore plastic surgeon, in a RealSelf Q&A about open vs. closed rhinoplasties. If you’re having a closed rhinoplasty, all incisions are placed on the inside of the nose, so there are no external scars.
Dr. Miller says it’s also important for patients to have realistic expectations. “It’s not a good idea to take a wide, thick nose and turn it into one that’s thin and tiny,” he says. “But if the steps are done properly, we can make the desired changes.” Thick nasal skin that makes it challenging to refine the nasal tip needs to be thinned out, for example. It’s important to find a board-certified facial plastic surgeon who specializes in ethnic rhinoplasties.
Case 26: Narrowing a wide tip can really soften the face. The challenge in Ethnic rhinoplasty is in making a nose smaller while still maintaining good structure and support so that definition is enhanced. In these 15-month photos, you can now see how tip narrowing along with reduction of the bridge convexity has created a very pretty, feminine nose that enhances her beauty.
You’ll be in a recovery room immediately after surgery. When getting ready to leave, a nurse will go over instructions on how to care for the drainage tubes, antibiotic use, and other important information about post-surgical care. She will also discuss symptoms that are commonly felt after surgery as well as the types of complications that could result.
Case 29: Major concerns for this patient were widening of the tip with a marked lack of projection which made his nose feel flat and washed out. Nostril thickness and rounding was also something he wanted addressed. In this case, irradiated donor rib cartilage was used to project and support the tip along with alar base reduction removing a significant amount of nostril flare to create a natural tip and nostril contour that is ethnically appropriate. Fat transfer to the cheeks helps to balance out his flat mid-face to strengthen the cheek contour which can be seen nicely on the profile view.
The closed vs. open rhinoplasty technique concerns only how the surgeon gets inside the nose to make the required changes, not what’s accomplished with the rhinoplasty procedure itself. Reshaping your nose may include breaking and removing bone and cartilage. If cartilage needs to be added, say, to rebuild the tip of the nose, it’s often taken from the septum, the middle portion of the nose—a technique called a cartilage graft. Cartilage may also be taken from other areas of your body, such as your ear. In some cases, a synthetic material, like a silicone implant, is used; but studies have shown that there may be more complications with synthetics. Cartilage grafts, nasal-bone osteotomies (removal of parts of the bone), dorsal-hump removal, and suture techniques applied to the nasal tip cartilages can all be performed with either the closed- or open-approach rhinoplasty.
Case 3: A curvature and droopy tip brings undue focus to this young man’s nose. Although there is still some swelling in these early post-operative photos, we can already see a nose that is now straight, has a smooth profile and no longer droops. A sense of length is preserved to match his oval face. More than that, because of these positive changes, he also looks younger.
Case 12: One of the things that we love about rhinoplasty is that we can combine dramatic changes such as straightening this patient’s nasal twist, and at the same time create some subtle enhancements such as refining and slightly deprojecting the tip while reducing the sense of columellar show. At 6 months, her nose now balances with her face and really brings out her beautiful eyes.
The procedure also does not permanently change the breast shape and firmness. As time marches on, you may expect the effects of aging and gravity to continue. In these cases, a secondary revision surgery may be required. The best candidates for this cosmetic surgery are women who are emotionally well-adjusted, have realistic expectations, and understand the procedure thoroughly.