Nose reshaping (Rhinoplasty)

A rhinoplasty (sometimes called a 'nose job') can help men and women of all ages (dependent on skin condition) to correct a large, disproportionate or irregular shaped nose. Patients often report feeling self conscious about their facial appearance or profile. Rhinoplasty surgery is one of the most popular facial cosmetic procedures provided and can give excellent results. 

The ultimate objective of performing a rhinoplasty is for the surgeon to listen to your needs and to create an evenly proportioned nose shape and profile, which will harmonise with the other dimensions of your face and bone structure. 

What is a rhinoplasty procedure and how is it performed?

A rhinoplasty procedure typically involves the surgical refining or removal of nasal bone and cartilage from just below the surface of the skin on the bridge, tip and/or nostril area. Following this refinement the skin is then re-draped over the newly designed underlying structure. 

A rhinoplasty normally involves the refining or removal of nasal bone and cartilage. The skin is then replaced over the newly designed underlying structure. This procedure is usually performed under general anaesthetic and can take around one hour to perform. However, complicated rhinoplasty procedures performed to either build up or reconstruct the bone and cartilaginous structures of the nose can take much longer. 

During a rhinoplasty procedure nearly all surgical incisions are made from within the nasal passage or nostril area and consequently surgical scars are usually hidden from view. One exception to this rule is when overly large or flared nostrils are surgically tapered, leaving small and usually insignificant scars, hidden in the natural crease line to the side or just below the nostril area itself. 

This advanced corrective procedure is a very precise one and should only be provided by an ENT Consultant who specialises in cosmetic surgery or a  Consultant Plastic or Specialist Surgeon, who is fully qualified and experienced to skillfully perform this type of surgery. 

What kind of men and women request this procedure?

Men and women of all ages who want to correct the general size of their nose. They may want to correct the disproportionate or irregular shape of either their profile, bridge, nasal tip or nostril area or have had a traumatic or disfiguring injury to the nose. Or maybe they have an abnormally flat appearance to the bridge of the nose
This particular procedure can provide excellent results, freeing men and women from the unwanted attention that can be caused by an irregular, disproportionate or unattractive nose. 

What are the results like?

Inevitable facial bruising and swelling occurs following this type of surgery and can take up to 10–14 days to settle to an acceptable level of appearance. Your nose will be obscured by a firm splint or support, which is typically applied to the nose immediately after the procedure.

After the initial swelling has settled down, subtle improvements to the contour of the newly shaped nose will continually take place for up to six to twelve months following surgery. It is usual for patients to experience some kind of nasal stuffiness, similar to having a heavy cold, for several weeks following rhinoplasty surgery. Your smell and taste can also be affected.

Internal sutures (stitches) are usually used during a rhinoplasty procedure and are absorbable. If external or unabsorbable sutures are used (usually only when a nostril reduction is performed) they will be removed after five to seven days. Most patients are required to wear a firm supportive nasal splint for 7–14 days post-operatively.

How will you feel after a rhinoplasty procedure?

Whilst a rhinoplasty procedure is usually considered a reasonably pain free one, the operated area is often quite tender for several months following surgery.

Analgesic tablets (pain killers) are always provided for any discomfort and patients are encouraged to sleep as upright as possible during the first two to three days of the recovery stage to help diminish residual swelling and bruising. Patients usually describe the way they feel as similar to having a heavy head cold, rather than experiencing specific pain. These symptoms diminish rapidly after the first week and as internal wounds heal.

In the early days following discharge, patients are strongly advised to avoid any level of activity that would put undue strain on the newly operated area. Post-operative patients are also advised to only blow your nose gently and to pay meticulous attention to their personal hygiene during their recovery period. Patients will also be advised to take a specific amount of recovery time away from work dependent on the type of work they perform, but it is usual to take at least a week to rest and recover at home whilst wearing the nasal splint.

It is often reported that altered sensitivity and numbness to the tip of the nose is a common side effect for up to 12 months following rhinoplasty surgery. 

Are there any risks involved in nose reshaping surgery?

All surgery involves an element of risk from developing complications. However, cosmetic surgery is usually undertaken voluntarily and only when patients are in good health. Therefore, the probability of developing complications with this kind of surgery are substantially lower than when surgery is performed due to ill health.

Risks such as bleeding, infection, irregularity, asymmetry, scarring and alteration in sensitivity will all be discussed openly at consultation, as well as our scrupulous efforts to manage and minimise these risks to their lowest possible potential. 

In most cases, the fine incisions and subsequent surgical scars that are made during this procedure are well hidden inside the nasal passages; however, the appearance of scars are a highly individual matter. Usually these fine scars mature, soften and fade to a negligible level. Very occasionally however, patients can develop firm internal scarring, known as hypertrophic scarring, which may require further corrective treatment.

What next?

The importance of a thorough pre-operative consultation with the ENT Consultant, Consultant Plastic or Specialist Surgeon who will perform your operation cannot be over stressed. You need time to consider all the benefits and risks of rhinoplasty surgery and the opportunity to reflect and consider all the information your Consultant Surgeon offers you before you make a decision regarding your potential procedure. Each consultation is tailored to your needs, but the consultation will always involve a thorough evaluation of your present and past medical history and a physical examination of the problem area. Your surgeon will take time to listen to your concerns and will take care to ensure that you have a thorough understanding of what can be done to help, the procedure itself, the recovery stages and a clear explanation of the risks involved.

You are positively encouraged to ask any questions that you may have and to look at photographs of others who have had the same type of Nose reshaping (Rhinoplasty)

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