Rhinoplasty

Alteration of nose shape

Rhinoplasty is a procedure which seeks to alter and improve the shape of the nose.

The nose plays a major role in giving character to the face and, sometimes, the desire to alter its appearance may reveal underlying psychological disorders, which must be considered carefully before proceeding with a surgical procedure.

A thorough pre-operative assessment is made to anticipate any functional impairment, which may cause breathing difficulties, such as nasal septum deviation or hypertrophic turbinates, as well as the implications for aesthetics of the nose. It is often necessary to combine procedures with the aim of improving both breathing and aesthetics (septorhinoplasty). At the pre-operative visits, the surgeon requests diagnostic imaging exams, which are necessary to plan the most appropriate surgical strategy.

Rhinoplasty allows change to the shape of the pre-existing nose, but it is not possible to create a new nose. It is extremely important to analyse, in great detail with the surgeon, all pre-operative pictures with different projections. This allows both surgeon and patient to define the scope of the changes, respecting the harmony and proportions of the nose relative to the face.

Dependent on the circumstance, it is possible to perform rhinoplasty either by making incisions inside the nostrils (closed approach), or through an incision at the base of the nose, with a small, virtually invisible, scar (open approach).

Rhinoplasty is performed under general anaesthesia (the patient is asleep), followed by a one-night stay in hospital.

Careful administration of pain-killers during and after the surgery ensures that post-operative pain and discomfort are kept to minimum.

The nose remains swollen for a long time after surgery; it can take several months before the final aesthetic results can be realised and appreciated.

Rhinoplasty is amongst the most challenging and intricate cosmetic procedures. During the healing process unpredictable and uncontrollable complications may occur, such as scar retraction or cartilage warping. As a result, post-operative correction may be requested, more so than in other cosmetic procedures.