Breathe Easier

Steven H. Dayan, MD, FACS

by Steven H. Dayan, MD, FACS | August 10, 2010 @ 01:00PM
Medically Reviewed by Steven Dayan

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If you have had a nose job, or are considering getting one, here are some things to consider: Do you breathe worse now, even after your nasal surgery? Has your ability to smell been reduced? Has your voice changed at all?

Unfortunately, for many interested in rhinoplasty, or nose reshaping, much thought isn't given to the primary function of the nose. Many patients who request nasal reshaping only focus on appearance. However, it's all too common that they return to a nasal surgeon because they can't breathe. For those who end up with this problem, the most common request is, "Can you please help me breathe better? I don't care what my nose looks like any more." To understand this feeling, imagine always suffering from a head cold.

Just as cosmetic surgery has become so popular, so has the number of surgeons providing services. Rhinoplasty is considered by many to be the most difficult all cosmetic surgical procedures. The nose continues to change over time. Subtle changes in the underlying structures of the nose lead to dramatic differences. Some surgeons may not be familiar with the long term effects of the changes they make. The nose has two valves, an internal and external. They provide a delicate balance in allowing air to enter. The slightest change in these valves can cause collapse and symptoms of obstruction. We now know that techniques popular in the 60s and 70s have led to nasal obstruction years later.

If you are considering undergoing nasal surgery, make sure you choose an experienced nasal surgeon. Ask your surgeon what measures are taken to prevent valve collapse. With the proper preparation and research, excellent long lasting results can be achieved, without the risk of future nasal valve collapse or dreaded nasal blockage.

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