While we’re led to believe that people are lining up for cosmetic surgery across the world, the fact is that the percentage is still small. Celebrity fascination comes with the obligatory “did they or didn’t they” question, answered by a panel of media savvy cosmetic surgeons who give their expert opinion. Maybe because it’s so in our face (pun intended) that it seems like everyone and, quite literally, their mother is going under the knife. However, one of the implied numbers in those who track cosmetic surgical procedures by groups like the ASPS, is those of people who are going back in for a second or third surgery. Some procedures may require an additional surgery, such as liposuction or abdominoplasty. Some are supposed to be a one-time thing. Like rhinoplasty.
With the growing number of cosmetic surgeons and their patients come unintended consequences of a market with serious potential. Because people want these procedures, but may not have the money to go to someone reputable, they will seek out whomever can do it on the cheap. Life-long injury and death are oftentimes part of this saga. What is required in this case is an additional visit to the very cosmetic surgeon they should have gone to in the first place who then has to correct mistakes. Because of this, one of the procedures we may hear more of is “revision rhinoplasty.” This is performed on patients who have had previous rhinoplasty jobs that were either botched or because the patient injured his or her self during the healing period. Many times the patient is simply unhappy with the results. Aesthetic appeal is one thing, but what about nasal function? Sometimes breathing can become difficult after receiving a rhinoplasty. Sometimes scar tissue builds up after a rhinoplasty and this needs to be fixed.
Rhinoplasty can be a difficult procedure to begin with, but a revision rhinoplasty is even harder on both cosmetic surgeon and patient. This is because a graft may be needed to correct the problem, and the graft needs to come from another part of the body, such as rib or ear cartilage, and even tissue from the scalp.
Restructuring the cartilage of the nose can be done if there is a “bump” in the nose. However, if there is a lack, or depression of tissue, then this cartilage must be obtained from somewhere else on the body. If there are problems with the tip of the nose where it looks collapsed or “pinched,” then it is almost better to have something called “reverse rhinoplasty.” In this case the cartilage is brought back to its original position, and contoured for aesthetics and functionality.
Even if people want to correct their rhinoplasty, they may not want to get further surgery. Minor imperfections can be fixed with injectable fillers like Radiesse or Restylane. Of course, these imperfections will need to be retouched every year or so as the filler’s usefulness diminishes. One of the newer techniques used by some cosmetic surgeons is the use of saline injections. Again, this is used for those who wish to correct minor imperfections.
Because a revision rhinoplasty is done to correct or fix problems, the expectations of how the nose might look are diminished a bit. Moving cartilage and tissue around can only be done so much before you begin to look like Michael Jackson. (Side note: Don’t expect a cosmetic surgeon to automatically give you another rhinoplasty if you’ve had more than one already. Psychological issues are looked at closely by reputable cosmetic surgeons.)
Unfortunately, a small percentage of rhinoplasty recipients will need further surgery no matter who their cosmetic surgeon is. Healing takes time, and there are those a little too eager to show off their new nose before its ready. Bumping the nose while it is healing is not uncommon. But there are those where the healing just isn’t going well. Having their noses looked after again is almost a foregone conclusion.
If you have gone overseas or stayed stateside and visited a cosmetic surgeon who made things worse by damaging your nose, you might want to consider revision rhinoplasty. Do your homework and be honest about why you feel you need another rhinoplasty. If you would like more information about this procedure, please contact an experienced cosmetic surgeon in your area.