Causes of Flared Nostrils After a Rhinoplasty

A rhinoplasty is one of the most complicated and delicate procedures in plastic surgery. A surgeon must carefully manipulate bone, cartilage, and skin, all while providing the patient with a desirable shape and natural-looking appearance that suits their individual features.

For this reason, a rhinoplasty should only be performed by a board certified facial plastic surgeon who specializes in the procedure. There are a number of details that must be taken into consideration when modifying or enhancing a nose, and only a surgeon with extensive experience will be familiar with these factors.

In some cases, patients experience the appearance of swollen or “flared” nostrils after having a rhinoplasty. This is not necessarily cause for concern, but you should be aware of the possible reasons for this change and how to discuss it with your surgeon.

Reason #1: Normal Post-Surgical Swelling

After any surgical procedure, your body’s normal healing mechanisms kick in. This is a healthy response that should be expected after rhinoplasty. The swelling means your nose will look temporarily “puffier” than its final result. In many cases, a rhinoplasty takes several months to return to its final, post-surgical enhanced shape and size. But keep in mind that others won’t notice the swelling after a few weeks. Only you will know that it’s there.

Reason #2: Imbalance Between Nostril Size and Overall Nose Size

As mentioned above, modifying a nose and giving it a pleasing new shape and size is anything but simple. If your surgeon is an expert at rhinoplasty, he or she likely knows that the size of your nostrils needs to be balanced with the overall nose shape and size. In some cases, nostrils should be reduced to create a natural and attractive shape for your enhanced nose. If your surgeon doesn’t take these steps, you can end up with nostrils that look “flared” or too large after your rhinoplasty.

Reason #3: Problems With Nose Tip Cartilage

The tip of your nose is made up of cartilage that gives it shape. But without enough support, this cartilage can collapse, giving the appearance of flared or swollen nostrils. The lower lateral cartilages, in particular, need to be handled with great care during a rhinoplasty to ensure this doesn’t happen. In addition, if these cartilages are not placed at the correct angle, you may end up with an undesired or unexpected result that affects the size and appearance of the nostrils.

Using an Expert for Rhinoplasty

Your nose is worth the effort to find the best possible facial plastic surgeon. You need an expert who has the skill and precision required for a successful rhinoplasty. Ultimately, a good surgeon will be able to create a natural-looking and attractive nose that truly “fits” your face with all of its features properly balanced. If you’re unhappy with your rhinoplasty results from another surgeon, contact Dr. Siegel’s office. There’s a good chance he may be able to help correct any issues with a revision rhinoplasty.

If you’d like to speak with a double board certified facial plastic surgeon about your options for rhinoplasty or revision rhinoplasty, call the office of Dr. Michel Siegel today!

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May 1, 2020 Update:

Our office has reopened as of Monday, April 27th and we are following the recommended guidelines for maximum safety.

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Please contact our office with any questions you have!

-Dr. Siegel & Staff

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