Rhinoplasty, also known as “nose reshaping” or “nose surgery,” is a procedure designed to improve the appearance and function of the nose. This type of surgery reshapes the nose so that it is in better harmony with the rest of the face. Rhinoplasty can also be performed to correct breathing problems associated with the internal nasal structures. Dr. Hiatt offers rhinoplasty at his practice in Mesa, AZ to correct a variety of problems concerning the structure of the nose.

The rhinoplasty procedure can improve the following:

  • Disproportionate nose size (in relation to other facial features)
  • Nasal asymmetry
  • Bumps or depressions on the bridge of the nose
  • The width of the nasal bridge
  • A bulbous, drooping, or upturned nasal tip
  • Large, wide, or upturned nostrils
  • Structural abnormalities that may cause breathing problems

The Ideal Rhinoplasty Candidate

During your initial consultation, Dr. Hiatt will review your medical history and the condition of your nose to determine if a rhinoplasty procedure would be right for you. Ideal candidates do not smoke and are physically and mentally healthy. Nose reshaping is a good option for patients age 13 or older whose facial growth is complete. Prospective patients should have realistic expectations of the procedure.

To understand the results that can be achieved with nose surgery, it is often helpful to take advantage of our free computer imaging during your consultation. This technology will allow you to preview your new appearance based on the description of your desired nose, and Dr. Hiatt will review and discuss the prospective results in order to formulate a surgical plan to achieve your ideal nasal structure.

Rhinoplasty Procedure Steps

The rhinoplasty procedure is usually performed on an outpatient basis with general anesthesia. The average surgery time is two hours, depending on the degree of correction needed and the technique performed. Dr. Hiatt will determine which rhinoplasty technique to use depending on the specific corrections that need to be made.

Open Rhinoplasty

This method uses an inconspicuous incision along the columella, the thin strip of tissue that separates the opening of the nostrils. The tissues covering the nose are lifted, allowing Dr. Hiatt access to reshape the structures of the nose. The bridge or tip of the nose can be smoothed out to improve nasal bumps, reform the nasal tip, or to create a smaller nose. To reduce the size of the nostrils or the width of the nasal base, narrow wedges of skin can be removed from the base of the nostrils where they connect to the cheek. Cartilage from the septum, the dividing wall in the middle of the nose, is often used for augmentation of the nose.If more cartilage is needed, sometimes ear cartilage or, rarely, rib cartilage can be used. Once the nose is sculpted into the desired form, the nasal tissues are replaced over the internal structures and the incision on the columella is closed.

Closed Rhinoplasty

The closed rhinoplasty procedure uses incisions concealed within the nose. The underlying structures are adjusted as necessary similar to an open rhinoplasty; the bridge or tip of the nose can be reshaped, and the nose width and nostrils can be sculpted to improve the appearance of the nose. As with an open rhinoplasty, a closed rhinoplasty can straighten a deviated septum to improve the breathing function of the nose. After the nose has been properly shaped, the incisions inside the nose are closed, leaving no apparent scars.

Rhinoplasty Recovery

After surgery, the nose will be supported with a splint for about 7 days. Packing inside the nostrils may also be used. Bruising and discoloration around the eyes and cheeks usually resolves within the first 9-10 days following the procedure. During this time, only minimal activity should be performed and the head should be kept elevated. Swelling may be apparent for up to several weeks and may recur intermittently in the mornings during recovery. Most patients return to work approximately 7 to 10 days after surgery. The appearance of the nose will gradually improve over time as the swelling subsides, and it may take up to a year for the nose to fully heal and show the final results.

Rhinoplasty Risks

As with any procedure, there are some risks associated with nose surgery. These include, but are not limited to:

  • Bleeding (hematoma)
  • Infection
  • Changes in skin sensation (usually temporary)
  • Skin contour irregularities
  • Fluid accumulation
  • Anesthesia risks

Rhinoplasty Costs

Insurance usually covers the cost of a rhinoplasty procedure if it is being performed to correct breathing problems. However, the cosmetic portion of the procedure is not covered by insurance. According to The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS), the national average surgeon fee for a rhinoplasty procedure in 2011 was $4,246. This number does not include the cost of anesthesia, the surgical facility, and the cost of any medical tests or prescriptions that may be needed. The cost of nose reshaping surgery also varies depending on the technique used and the geographic location of where the surgery is performed. You will receive the most accurate rhinoplasty cost estimate during your initial consultation.

If you are interested in the rhinoplasty procedure, please schedule a consultation with our board certified surgeon, Dr. Hiatt, by calling(480) 844-1410 or filling out our contact form today.