Nose Surgery (Rhinoplasty)
The nose is the centerpiece of the face and subtle changes may have a dramatic impact. Whether you are unhappy with the nose with which were born, or you suffered an injury, it is important to go to a surgeon who not only has an artistic eye but also understands the mechanics of breathing. Dr. Patel appreciates that every face deserves a nose that is uniquely suited to it. He believes a picture is worth a thousand words, so he uses the latest computer imaging technology to generate an image of your new nose before surgery. This way, patient and surgeon have a common goal before surgery.
How may nasal breathing be improved with surgery?
The nose has two functions: first to breathe, and second to look good. There are various structures inside the nose that may contribute to problems breathing, i.e. the nasal valves, septum, and turbinates. With Dr. Patel’s background in nasal and sinus surgery, working on these problem areas is second nature. Even if you've never had breathing problems in the past, maneuvers that refine your nose may put you at risk for future breathing problems, so it is of utmost importance to address this at the time of surgery. The last thing you need is a pretty nose that doesn't work.
Where are the incisions?
For most cases, Dr. Patel prefers to use what is called an open approach. This requires one small incision on the underside of the nose, and this heals very well. All other incisions are hidden inside the nose. In some patients, Dr. Patel may be able to perform the surgery with no external incisions at all.
What may be done for the bridge of the nose?
A crooked nasal bridge may be straightened. A hump, saddle, or any other irregularities may be improved to create a straighter, more natural nasal bridge. Some patients are born with a low nasal bridge or end up with one after aggressive surgery. A ski-slope profile may look unnatural but may be corrected to recover a natural profile.
What may be done for the tip of the nose?
The nasal tip may be rotated upward or downward, depending in the desired look. Also, more definition may be added to the tip of the nose. The tip of the nose should look natural, and Dr. Patel believes the best way to do this is to mold the patient's natural anatomy. Another important aspect of the nasal tip is maintaining its support, which weakens with the aging process (that is why our noses tend to become droopy and point downward as we get older). Dr. Patel adds strength to the nasal tip so it is well-supported long after surgery.
How does nasal surgery differ for non-Caucasian (“ethnic”) patients?
Along the lines of preserving a natural look, Dr Patel believes in ethnic preservation. Old surgical philosophies sought to make every nose look alike. Today we recognize that perceptions of beauty differ among ethnic groups, and so nose surgery must be tailored to meet the patient’s goals.
How does nasal surgery differ for those who have previously had surgery?
Dr Patel also specializes in revision nasal surgery for patients who have had nasal surgery elsewhere. With each revision, the nasal surgery becomes more and more difficult. Here, less surgery is sometimes more. While some noses may be improved with minor surgery, others may require and extensive reconstruction to restore both beauty and function.
What may I expect during and after surgery?
After surgery, the patient wears a protective nasal splint on the outside of the nose for five to seven days. External sutures are removed at five days. All internal sutures are dissolvable. Dr. Patel will see you often during the early postoperative period. Most swelling improves within the first few weeks, however for revision surgery, the healing process may take longer.
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