Rhinoplasty is a popular cosmetic surgery procedure and it is performed to alter the size, appearance or shape of the nose. Many patients feel that their nose is too big or they wish their nose was straighter or more refined in its appearance. Beyond the aesthetic changes that can be made to the nose, rhinoplasty can also improve the functional aspects of the nose in order to help patients breathe easier on a daily basis. The two most common forms of rhinoplasty surgery for patients are open rhinoplasty and closed rhinoplasty and they will be discussed later in this informative article. In addition to these rhinoplasty techniques, a study from late last year reveals an emerging rhinoplasty method that provides final results that do more than simply improve the physical appearance of a person.
Brian J.F. Wong, MD, is a professor and director of the Division of Facial Plastic Surgery in the Department of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery at the University of California, Irvine School of Medicine. According to Dr. Wong, he has perfected a rhinoplasty technique that provides nuanced results and it is known as the Articulated Alar Rim Graft (AARG). The main purpose of this rhinoplasty technique is to provide needed stability to the nasal structure as well as improve the overall aesthetic appearance of the nasal tip. In addition, AARG is also performed to better increase the flow of air the patient enjoys each day.
In a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, Facial Plastic Surgery, Dr. Wong discussed and explored the overall effectiveness of the Articulated Alar Rim Graft for improving the function of the nasal airway in patients.
The name of the study published in the journal is “Functional Outcomes, Quantitative Morphometry and Aesthetic Analysis of Articulated Alar Rim Grafts in Septorhinoplasty”. The study included 90 patients that had rhinoplasty performed where an AARG technique was used by a cosmetic surgeon.
According to Dr. Wong, “I approach cosmetic operations of the nose like a civil engineer and an architect. Using the AARG technique, I am able to address deformities some patients have in their nasal tip. These deformities often prevent them from breathing properly.”
When examining the results of the study, it was shown that, by using the Articulated Alar Rim Graft technique, Wong and his team were able to make large improvements in the ability of a person to breathe in addition to making improvements in the aesthetic appearance of the structure of the nose.
As mentioned above, patients that are seeking surgical help to correct or reconstruct the look or function of the nose often seek these services due to the width or length of the nasal tip. While the desire to change, update or refine the look of the nasal tip is a common request of patients looking to undergo rhinoplasty, it is not always easy to achieve these changes as the nose is one of the most prominent features on the face and any changes in its appearance can also change the overall balance of the features on the face. For patients looking to make these desired changes to the nose, AARG helps to correct the nasal shape of the nose as well as provide a better overall nasal structure.
Dr. Wong, along with other researchers at the University of California Irvine (UCI), has also developed a numerical system that provides a classification for the shape of the nose. Overall, Dr. Wong says the ultimate goal of the rhinoplasty surgery is to have the tip of the nose resemble a triangle that is unilateral in appearance.
According to Dr. Wong, “We have for the first time defined a ‘number on beauty’. The structural stability provided by these grafts gives us a very elegant way of addressing a deformity.”
As mentioned above, rhinoplasty has traditionally been performed as open or closed rhinoplasty. Here is the difference between the two options:
The surgeon will make the desired changes to the bone, cartilage or skin of the patient in order to achieve the final look the patient wants to enjoy.
During the recovery period, patients can expect some bruising that will last for around two weeks. In general, it can take up to a year for the swelling to completely subside and the final results to be visible to the patient as well as others viewing the nose.
The results from a rhinoplasty surgery should be permanent. However, the results can be altered if the person suffers some sort of accident or trauma to the nose.
In order to avoid being disappointed with the final results of rhinoplasty, patients need to discuss their desired final results with their surgeon. The doctor will set realistic expectations so the patient will not be disappointed by the final appearance of the nose.