Ethnic Rhinoplasty: FAQs

All noses are unique, and the best plastic surgeons will tailor every nose job to a patient’s individual features. But as with architecture or painting, there are certain aesthetic rules that should be followed in rhinoplasty. (Da Vinci would have been an excellent plastic surgeon!) These rules can vary widely depending on your ethnic group, so much so that ethnic rhinoplasty has a category of its own in the plastic surgery world.

So what do you need to know? Here are some of the most frequently asked questions about ethnic rhinoplasty.

How Is It Different To Regular Rhinoplasty?

Ethnic rhinoplasty uses the same fundamental surgical techniques as regular rhinoplasty. The procedure can be “open” or “closed”, as we described in a previous post. Incisions are made either to the patch of skin between your nostrils or to the skin inside your nostrils. Using these incisions as a starting point, your surgeon will then make the desired alterations to your nose.

Where ethnic rhinoplasty differs, however, is in the aesthetic approach taken by your plastic surgeon. Nasal anatomy tends to vary quite a lot between different ethnic groups. Asians, for instance, often have a wider and flatter nasal bridge and a more bulbous tip than average. African Americans generally have thicker nasal skin, as well as shorter nasal bones and a wider tip. It’s very important for a surgeon to be fully aware of these anatomical differences, because they require a different approach during surgery.

Non-ethnic rhinoplasty frequently involves a reduction in the nasal cartilage, in order to flatten a hump or straighten a crooked bridge. Ethnic rhinoplasty, on the other hand, is more often a process of augmentation—of “building up” the nasal bridge through cartilage grafts.

Why Should I Get It?

If you’re unhappy with the current appearance of your nose, but want to make sure that any changes don’t lack harmony with the rest of your facial features, then you could be a great candidate for ethnic rhinoplasty! In particular, if you’d like a more defined nasal bridge or nasal tip, these improvements are no problem at all for an experienced rhinoplasty specialist. The overall goal is to help you be happier with your appearance, without detracting from your individuality or giving you an unnatural look.

Are All Plastic Surgeons Qualified To Perform Ethnic Rhinoplasty?

Because most rhinoplasty in the U.S. is geared towards Caucasians, there are some plastic surgeons who aren’t fully aware of the subtleties of ethnic rhinoplasty. A “one-size-fits-all” approach—most often taken by surgeons who aren’t rhinoplasty specialists—often ends in imperfect results and unhappy patients.

For that reason, you should look for a specialist facial plastic surgeon, and particularly someone with experience in ethnic rhinoplasty. A doctor who performs a multitude of nose jobs every year will likely be more reliable than a doctor who dabbles in everything.

Dr. Siegel is Houston’s rhinoplasty specialist. To find out more about ethnic rhinoplasty and whether it could be right for you, contact him today!

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