Probably nobody would argue that rhinoplasty has been exponentially gaining popularity in the last two and a half decades and so has facial plastic surgery in general. Studies have found that self awareness of looks in social media has lead to a significant increase in the demand for surgical nose reconstruction. A proportionate and attractive nose has shown to be especially valued by female patients.
What Is Rhinoplasty?
Also known as a nose job, rhinoplasty is the medical term describing plastic surgery for nose reconstruction or form correction for functional or cosmetic purposes. A nose job may involve the following medical and surgical professionals:
- Ear, nose and throat specialist (otolaryngologist).
- Jaw, face and neck specialist (maxillofacial surgeon)
- Plastic surgeon
Depending on the complexity of a case, two or more of these physicians may need to consult each other to ensure the best outcome.
The functional aspect addresses limitations in nasal function caused by trauma or birth defects that prevent the person from breathing normally. The operation restores the normal function of the nose after a blunt, penetrating or blast trauma that has compromised the respiratory status of the patient. It helps infants born with bilateral choanal atresia, a condition that results in blockage of the posterior nasal passage. This emergency condition is caused either by abnormal soft tissue or abnormal bone tissue, preventing the child from breathing normally, especially during the first 6 weeks of life when an infant’s breathing is primarily nasal.
Functional rhinoplasty is used in solving or alleviating the following health conditions:
- Narrowing, stenosis or collapse of the nasal valves
- Nasal birth abnormality compromising breathing function
- Infection, trauma or tumor resulting in impaired breathing
- Obstructed nasal breathing for reasons other than the above
The cosmetic aspect of rhinoplasty, on the other hand, refers to the aesthetic enhancement of a person’s nose. Fashion and celebrities have major influence on formation of taste and self esteem, especially in the younger population. Plastic surgeons today see more younger patients than ever before. Certain nose shapes are perceived as more attractive than others, particularly among young women.
There is also a rising incidence of skin cancer due to basal-cell carcinoma or melanoma lesions. Even though every type of skin is susceptible to skin cancer, it is predominantly observed in aged patients or people who live in very sunny geographic areas. People with pale skin are at a higher risk for skin cancer development because they have fewer melanocytes (cells that produce melanin, a group of natural pigments), and pale skin is slower at making melanocytes during sun exposure compared to dark skin. After a portion of the nose has been incised during the cancer removal surgery, a reconstructive plastic surgery becomes necessary.
Needless to say, someone who has suffered a trauma to the face may need rhinoplasty both for functional and aesthetics reasons, therefore the two aspects frequently go hand in hand.
Do I Need Plastic And Reconstructive Surgery For My Nose?
The answer to this question depends solely on your specific situation. No two people or patients are exactly the same, therefore you can find as many reasons for rhinoplasty surgery as there are rhinoplasty patients. There are many factors that influence a person’s and a surgeon’s decision to perform rhinoplasty.
If you or your child are suffering from a nasal defect that does not allow for proper breathing function, a rhinoplasty surgeon can be of invaluable assistance. Unless the situation is an emergency, make sure you request and compare at least three professional opinions before making your final decision. Get very well informed on the benefits and risks of the operation as each invasive procedure contains risks in addition to the advertised benefits. If you are reluctant to get a facial surgery due a low risk tolerance level, explore alternative methods first and use surgery as a last resort for the desired improvement.
It is also possible that you have your own personal reason to request a cosmetic nose correction that would help greatly enhance your self-esteem. Consult with a well-reviewed plastic surgeon for important professional guidance. Many people are dissuaded and hesitant to take this step due to fear of stigmatization, depending on their cultural background and how closely connected they are to that background. Oftentimes we are taught at home, school or in church that there are “things” in life that are significantly more important than physical appearance. While this advise inarguably contains great value and in many cases is true, it is also true that society continues to impose certain criteria for desired appearance. Firms engaged in the marketing of beauty products have been feeding for decades on the vulnerabilities of women and more lately also men, based on perceived physical imperfections.
People who think beyond the invasive nature and cost of the nose job procedure have expressed their right to enjoy an enhanced nose or face based on the understanding that, if it is reasonable and acceptable to go to the hairdresser and acquire a different haircut or hairdo, then why not have a nose reshaped in a way that pleases us to see when we look in the mirror every day? While there isn’t a right or wrong answer to this question, there are still many opponents of cosmetic plastic surgery, even though it is less invasive than many other widely accepted and often unquestioned surgical procedures that take place on a daily basis.
Top Rhinoplasty Surgeons
Depending on where you live, you may find a great plastic surgeon in your area or close by. Alternatively, you may have to travel out of state if you want to use the services of a specific doctor with an outstanding reputation.
To save yourself some time and money, start by looking for surgeons in your area. Read all their credentials and testimonials, take a note of the years of experience each one has, and what specific types of problems they have treated. Once you have compiled a list of 4-6 names with their addresses, phone numbers and any additional information that would aid in the decision-making process, it is time to make some phone calls.
Ask specific questions you have written and write down the answers given by the receptionist or the coordinator. After you call all plastic surgeons on your list, narrow your choices down to three or four and schedule at least two appointments. Get a feel for the professionals with whom you speak and select the one who clearly presents you with facts that are relevant to your needs, has the patience to answer all your questions, and is willing to address all of your concerns. It is extremely important to develop a trusting professional patient-doctor relationship right from the start, so you feel comfortable with your decision and know that you did everything within your power to ensure a successful surgical outcome.