Many people are self-conscious about their nose. Sometimes, the nose is perceived as oversized or there is a hump on the bridge. Other times, patients are unsatisfied with the shape of the nasal tip or the width of their nostrils. Rhinoplasty, or nose surgery, is therefore one of the most common cosmetic procedures in the United States.

During your consultation, your surgeon will discuss in detail with you the areas of your nose that concern you. Your nose should be examined from the front as well as from a profile view because any changes that are made should be in harmony with the appearance of the rest of the face. Sometimes, other cosmetic procedures are discussed and offered in conjunction with a rhinoplasty. The goal is to enhance and balance the face as a whole. 

Rhinoplasty can also be performed to improve breathing problems caused by narrow or obstructive nostrils. There are two main techniques to rhinoplasty – the endoscopic or closed approach and the open approach. 

1. In the endoscopic or closed approach, small incisions are made just inside the nasal rim. The major benefit to this approach is there is less dissection or disturbance of the tissues therefore healing is usually faster. Alternatively, an open approach is utilized to allow for better visualization of the tissues and exposure of the nasal tip. 

2. The open technique employs a small inverted “v” incision at the columella, or the skin between the two nostrils. With this technique, there is more swelling involved and therefore longer recovery time. But the external incision usually heals quite well and is not noticeable over time. The decision to proceed with an open versus closed approach is dependent on your surgeon’s preference and experience and your needs.