Nose Surgery (Rhinoplasty)
Nose surgery or Rhinoplasty – the medical term for this procedure – is an extremely well-known form of elective surgery to reshape or modify the shape and size of the nose. Another name for nose surgery is ‘nose job’ or ‘nose reshaping’ and is not only requested for cosmetic reasons, but may also be performed to correct breathing and sinus issues.
The nose can be made smaller, larger, straighter. Nose surgery can smooth bumps, lumps and imperfections, it can modify the nasal tip, nostrils, nasal asymmetry and deviation. It can also correct a birth defect or repair any damage that may have been caused by an injury or disease (such as cancer).
There are many benefits of having this procedure, such as creating an ideal symmetry of the face and therefore improving the overall look of a person. This may help to increase one’s self confidence. The earliest recommended age for having this procedure is the mid teens because younger than this the nose may still be growing. There is generally no upper age limit providing the patient is in good health.
Why have Nose Surgery?
The most positive aspect of having rhinoplasty surgery is that you will have little or no visible scarring. Depending on what you would like done to your nose, the usual procedure begins with the plastic surgeon making small incisions inside the nose or across the underside of the nose between the nostrils and altering the structure and shape of the nose. The reason for this technique is so that after the procedure and once the swelling has gone down; the skin will shrink back and fit the new nose perfectly and naturally.
If the individual would like to alter the shape or size of the nose, the surgeon will work on the cartilage within the nose and remove or shape parts of it to create the ideal nose for the individual. Patients who have breathing problems because of irregularities in the internal structure of the nose can have this remedied at the same time as the nose alterations are being undertaken.
There is another kind of nasal surgery which is used to straighten the nose known as ‘Septro-Rhinoplasty’. This is completed by plastic surgeons to rebuild the nose and make it straighter. Both septro-rhinoplasty and rhinoplasty itself fall under the category ‘Augmentation Rhinoplasty’.
The procedure for your Rhinoplasty will vary depending on your unique needs. There are two common methods used, the Open technique and the Closed technique.
In the Closed technique, incisions are made inside the nose and the cartilage is worked from with the nostrils.
In the Open technique, in addition to internal incisions, an incision is made across your columella (the cartilage that separates your nostrils). The skin is lifted, allowing the surgeon greater access to perform the procedure.
Risks and Complications
Generally, modern day surgery is considered safe.
There are several risks and complications that are possible with procedures completed under general anaesthetic. These risks include; suppressed breathing, lowered blood pressure, heart failure and even the risk of death. These issues by law will be discussed with you by your surgeon prior to having the procedure. Approximately one-third of patients who receive an anaesthetic during surgery will experience “anaesthesia sickness” or post-operative nausea and vomiting (POVN).
The risks associated with having rhinoplasty surgery can include the following:
Post operative bleeding, which is caused by the surgery itself, this is not uncommon however it usually corrects itself over time.
Infections can occur after this surgery and can lead to an abscess forming. If it does not go away on its own, this can result in the infection being treated with antibiotics and the abscess being drained either with local anaesthetic or under general anaesthetic, as it can be uncomfortable.
Adhesions can cause the airway to become obstructed. An adhesion is scar tissue created by the immune system to heal the area, which has been damaged. One cannot control the growth of this scar tissue and it may have to be removed if it affects your airways and your breathing. This will need to be done under general anaesthetic.
If the surgeon removes too much osseo-cartilaginous framework, this can result in the end of the nose structure becoming weak and this can cause it collapse in on itself resulting in the nose looking like it has been pinched at the end.
Q. Are there any age restrictions for undergoing nasal surgery?
A. Yes, the usual age that you can start having this surgery is around 15 years old with parental consent. This is due to the fact that prior to this age, the individual’s nose may not have finished developing.
Q. Is nasal surgery painful?
A. This is relative to the individual, however it is only natural to feel discomfort after having this surgery. After the surgery, the surgeon will usually prescribe you some painkillers to control the pain.
Q. How long does this surgery last?
A. The surgery usually lasts between two to three hours however, this is again relative to the individual and what kind of nasal surgery they are having. This is an approximate time and may be increased if any complications arise.
Q. Will I like what I see straight after the surgery?
A. Straight after the procedure there will be a huge amount of discolouration, swelling and bleeding so the short answer is no. Give it time and as the swelling goes down the nose will begin to look natural. Most patients after a time suggested by their surgeon, are extremely happy with the results.
What does Rhinoplasty cost? What does a nose job cost?
It depends on the surgeon and hospital you choose and the amount of work involved in your surgery. Make sure you ask your surgeon if his price includes the hospital stay and the anaesthetist.
Approximately $6,000 – $12,000