The rhinoplasty consultation is an excellent time to convey what it is that you dislike about your nose and what you would like to change. Dr. DeJoseph will work with you during this meeting to develop a surgical plan to help you meet your desired aesthetic goals. It is often very helpful for patients to come into this meeting with an idea of what it is that they dislike about their nose and what they would like to have changed. Having a basic understanding of the nasal anatomy can help you to convey this.
The underlying anatomy of the nose is what makes it appear the way it does. An accurate assessment of the nasal anatomy is essential to successful rhinoplasty. The following are the major components that make up the nose:
- Radix. The radix refers to the uppermost portion of the nose located between the eyes.
- Dorsum. The dorsum is the portion of the nose more often referred to as the bridge. Patients often request changes in this area if it appears too wide, too flat, too big, too small, too narrow or deviated. An ideal nasal dorsum creates a soft, curvilinear line beginning at the eyebrow down through the radix to the tip.
- Tip. Many patients seek rhinoplasty to improve the nasal tip, whether it be is too big, too wide, too long, pointy, droopy, flat, short, pushed up (pig nose), bulbous or deviated. An unattractive tip can draw attention away from the rest of the nose and detract from an otherwise pleasant appearance. A well-balanced nasal tip can not only improve the harmony of the nose but of the overall facial appearance as well.
- Alae. The ala are the flared, wing-like structures on the sides of the nostrils. Ideally they should not extend wider than the inner corner of the eye. Additionally, the ala and nasal tip should ideally create an equilateral triangle when viewed from below. If the ala appear too wide, too large, flared or bulbous, rhinoplasty can correct this.
- Airway. Rhinoplasty can not only correct the appearance of the nose but the function as well. Some patients seek rhinoplasty to correct breathing problems due to airway obstruction. Airway obstruction may be caused by enlarged turbinates or nasal deviation.
Columella. The columella refers to the strip of skin located between the nostrils. A “hanging” columella is one which appears to droop and this can be corrected with rhinoplasty.