Did you know that there are many different kinds of nose surgery other than cosmetic rhinoplasty? While that’s certainly a very popular choice for many patients seeking an effective way to enhance their aesthetic appeal, there are other kinds of nose surgery, each with a different intended outcome. By working with a qualified plastic surgeon, you can discover which is going to be the best option for your unique situation and anatomy.

Remember, everyone’s body is unique, and therefore, all cosmetic surgeries—and all surgeries in general—will be slightly different. Let’s explore the different kinds of nose surgeries available and which purposes they serve.

Cosmetic Rhinoplasty

Cosmetic rhinoplasty is a blanket term to describe any kind of rhinoplasty that is expressly conducted for the purpose of enhancing or modifying the look of a patient’s nose. These kinds of surgeries are generally considered elective, though in many cases they are covered by insurance. By consulting a qualified plastic surgeon, you can determine all of your options—not only for how rhinoplasty can help you  achieve your aesthetic goals, but in which ways a medical professional can help you with the administrative side of the procedure.

Reduction Rhinoplasty

Reduction rhinoplasty is a cosmetic procedure intended to reduce the size and redefine the nose. This is one of the most common forms of rhinoplasty, as both men and women often seek out a more defined, elegant nasal structure. The areas that are most commonly modified include the tip of the nose and the bridge of the nose. The tip of a person’s nose might be bulbous or misshapen, and the bridge of the nose is a common area where undesirable bumps are located. These kinds of aesthetic genetic challenges can be met with reduction rhinoplasty.

Augmentation Rhinoplasty

The purpose of augmentation rhinoplasty, in contrast to reduction rhinoplasty, is to increase the general proportions of the nose. While this is a procedure that is less common that reduction rhinoplasty, it is still frequently performed for patients who need it, either because their noses are simply too small as a result of their unique genetics, or as a result of environmental complications, such as an injury in which the cartilage has been damaged. In some cases, augmentation rhinoplasty will be necessary during revision rhinoplasty (discussed next) in the event that too much cartilage or tissue was removed during an initial rhinoplasty operation.

Revision Rhinoplasty

Revision rhinoplasty refers to a secondary (or in some cases, tertiary) rhinoplasty operation that seeks to correct any problems or complications that arose after an initial procedure. These rhinoplasty operations can include both reduction or augmentation rhinoplasty, but generally seek to restore any anatomy of the nose that doesn’t look right or is causing difficulty breathing. In particular, pinched nasal tips are often the target of a revision rhinoplasty, as the tip of the nose may turn inward or “collapse” after an overly-aggressive surgeon has removed too much cartilage or tissue from the tip of the nose. These kinds of revision rhinoplasty procedures seek to restore not only the shape of the nose, but the continued function of the airways.

Post-Traumatic Rhinoplasty (After an Accident)

After a patient has been in an accident and the nose has been injured, rhinoplasty is sometimes necessary to return the nose to its previous shape and appearance. However, in many cases, after some consideration, patients opt to “take advantage” of this situation and may choose to have cosmetic enhancements performed during the procedure—it can be a nice way to see the silver lining of an unfortunate event.

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Dr. Cory Torgerson
Dr. Cory Torgerson
Dr. Cory Torgerson is one of Canada’s most talented and prominent facial plastic surgeons, focusing on head & neck facial surgery. Dr. Torgerson has been frequently invited to teach and lecture on these topics across North America. He has hospital privileges at Sunnybrook Hospital, one of the premier hospitals in the University of Toronto Health Network.
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