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Nose reshaping (or Nose job/Rhinoplasty)

  • Last modified date:
    8 February 2007


To reshape the nose or relieve blockages in the nostrils.

The treatment:

This procedure should be carried out by a surgeon with relevant skills and experience in an establishment registered with the Healthcare Commission.

There are a number of procedures within the scope of nose reshaping, so the exact nature of the treatment will depend on the desired result. Depending on the extent of the surgery, the operation may take place under a general or local anaesthetic and will take around two hours.

There are two main techniques used in nose reshaping operations: open and closed. Open means that some or all of the cuts are made outside the nose; closed means all the cuts are made inside the nose.

A nose reshaping operation normally involves separating the soft tissue that lies on top of the nose from the bone and cartilage underneath. Depending on the operation, the surgeon might break the nose bone and reposition it and/or reshape the cartilage.

The results:

The shape and/or size of your nose should be altered - either for cosmetic reasons or to enhance breathing.

The risks:

General risks associated with surgery - see Considering cosmetic surgery?

Some patients find that there are irregularities in the shape of their nose after surgery, although these irregularities may settle with time. The final results may take up to 12  months to emerge and therefore it is important to wait before making any decisions about the necessity for further surgery.

Before you start:

Your surgeon can only work within the limitations of your bone and cartilage structure, so there are limits to how far you can alter the shape of your nose. Furthermore, it is essential that the surgery doesn't interfere with your breathing, so this may prevent you from having certain procedures.

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