One of my passions and specialties as a facial plastic surgeon is nose surgery, or rhinoplasty. As a double board certified facial plastic surgeon and Ear, Nose and Throat surgeon, I am uniquely qualified to perform rhinoplasties for cosmetic AND functional reasons. This is very important and often overlooked by patients when seeking a change in how their nose looks. The nose is critical for breathing, physical exercise, sleeping and our overall general well-being. Paying attention to the functionality of our nose and how much easier it can help us breathe is just as important. The difference between the two surgical procedures is that a cosmetic procedure improves the appearance of the nose whereas the functional procedure is meant to improve the airflow through the nose. However, when performing a functional rhinoplasty, changes will also be made to the appearance of the nose. I can perform both surgeries at the same time thereby addressing both issues for the patients.
There are a few reasons as to why airflow may be impaired. This could be due to impaired function of the cartilages as well as the bony structure of the nose. Some common areas of impaired airflow include the external nasal valve and the internal nasal valve. The external area involves the cartilages that make up the tip of the nose and the area around the nostril. The internal valve involves the interactions of the septum and what are called the upper lateral cartilages. Many patients with the above abnormalities have a history of trauma/injury to the nose. Another common question is “will my insurance cover the surgery” and the short answer is yes. However, this will sometime require many “appeals” to the insurance company to verify that the problem is truly functional and indicated and not an attempt at getting a cosmetic procedure.
Lastly, patients can experience very dramatic differences when performing a cosmetic and functional rhinoplasty. Many of our patients are shocked at the benefits of not only having a better and improved looking nose, but suddenly being able to breathe better through their nose and no longer having to exclusively breathe through their mouth. They can sleep better at night as well and have a more restful sleep.
As with all of our procedures, rhinoplasty can be performed in our state of the art operating room in our office. However, when I combine a rhinoplasty with the functional aspect, this may sometimes require for the patient to undergo the procedure at an outpatient surgical facility for general anesthesia. The best way to start the process is to schedule a free consultation where I can see you in my office in person and provide a thorough examination of your nose cosmetically and functionally and review your options and surgery expectations. I look forward to meeting you.
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