Rhinoplasty VS Septoplasty

The difference between Rhinoplasty and Septoplasty.

Do I need septoplasty or rhinoplasty?
First of all, the general name for these surgeries is called “Nose Job”, the reason is that there can be many different alterations performed on the nose. Of course, this depends on the patients’ needs. But mainly, this is divided into 2.

1-Breathing issues
2-Aesthetical problems

Well, both issues can be corrected together as well. To put it in simply, rhinoplasty covers mostly aesthetical concerns of the patient and septoplasty covers breathing concerns of the patients. When both concerns are combined, then it would be a septo-rhinoplasty surgery.

What is septoplasty?
If you seem to have airway blockage due to your nose not being straight in the midline, this means you have a deviated septum, this can be corrected by septoplasty surgery. The septum is the middle of the nose which divides the 2 nostrils, and when this area is not aligned straight in the middle, it can create breathing problems, for example not being able to breathe from one of your nostrils. So, when the septum is brought back to middle, this is going to help you breathe better as there will no longer be a nasal cartilage blocking the airway. The septum would be trimmed, reshaped and repositioned to the midline.

This procedure can be performed either open or closed, but we do prefer to perform this with closed approach if this is a primary case.

The emphasis on this procedure is about the functions of the nose, whether you can breathe or not. When you are not able to breathe properly through your nose, this can lead to sinus issues or nose bleeding problems or allergic chronic problems.

You might encounter problems such as, snoring, headaches or stuffed nose. The breathing issue can be caused by trauma, contact sports, falls etc.

Also, your nose can look crooked too… When the septum is off-balance, this can create an unpleasant look aesthetically, this is where rhinoplasty comes in and then in such case, rhinoplasty and septoplasty surgeries can be combined. If the septoplasty surgery is performed alone, then you should not expect any changes on the apperance of your nose aesthetically. But if septoplasty is combined with rhinoplasty then, both inner and outer parts of the nose are revised and reshaped.

This procedure can be performed in the hospital under general anesthesia. You would need to stay at the hospital for 1 night and the surgery takes around 2 hours.

What is Rhinoplasty?

Rhinoplasty surgery specifically aims to change the appereance of the nose. When you have problems on your nose such as, the shape is not as you want it, or the size of your nose is too big, or you have a bump on your nose, the nostril sizes are too big, if the tip of your nose is overdefined, underdefined, overprojected or too deprojected etc…

All these issues can be corrected with rhinoplasty. Every patients’ needs and desires are different and unique so the treatment plan should be made according to each specific patient. Patients sometime show wish pictures of how they would want their noses to look like, but let’s not forget the fact that each person’s facial anatomy is unique so what would be fitting your wish picture might not maybe fit you. So, it is very very important to hear what your surgeon has to say about your nose and how your surgeon prefers to approach it.

Just like in septoplasty, there are 2 different techniques here, closed and open rhinoplasty. In open rhinoplasty, there is a small incision made on the columella but in closed technique, there is no visible incision on the outside, the incisions are made from the inside of the nose. The trauma caused to the nose is less and the recovery in closed rhinoplasty technique is easier compared to the open one.

If you had performed rhinoplasty before and this would be your second or third etc.. surgery, then probably open technique will have to be applied because it would be important to see the nose from all angles and see the deformity properly. Spare cartilages from the rib might be necessary to be able to reshape the nose, because you might not have enough cartilage left due to your previous surgeries. The extra cartilages will help reshaping the nose properly, otherwise the surgeon might be short of grafts.

The goal here is to keep things natural and you would not know what kind of wonders a rhinoplasty surgery can create for a patient self-confidence wise!

This procedure can be performed in the hospital under general anesthesia. You would need to stay at the hospital for 1 night and the surgery takes around 2 to 4 hours.

What do they have in common?

Well, both procedures are performed under general anesthesia, you would need 1 night of hospital stay for both procedures. The recovery times are common too. Although, septoplasty recovery time is shorter compared to rhinoplasty, the nose has more work done and recieves a bigger trauma in rhinoplasty surgery. You would need to have a cast on your nose 7 days after the surgery. And you can start going back to work and back to your daily life again 7 days post surgery. The facial swelling and bruising in both surgeries will not take longer than 10 days. You will have inner splints in your nose and an outer cast.

Am I a good candidate for rhinoplasty or septoplasty surgery?

There is this one point which should never be left out that, the nose can have a nice aesthetical shape, but if it cannot function properly, meaning if it cannot breathe, then all that has been done goes to waste! The nose should look beautiful and function properly at the same time.

The idea is to create a nice form for the nose which functions properly. You can have a nice look but if you cannot breathe, then there is no point in changing the aesthetic shape of the nose. This means you would have to consider a septo-rhinoplasty surgery.

The best for you to decide which fits you is to consult your plastic surgeon about your needs and desires and tell him/her about your concerns and he/she should decide which would be appropriate for you. For example, if you have breathing issues, but you do not want the shape of your nose to change, then probably you are a good candidate for septoplasty surgery.

But the final word is decided with you and your surgeon together. 🙂

Septoplasty vs Rhinoplasty Recovery

Recovery for both procedures are not so different from eachother. In both, 3 days after the surgery, the inner splints are removed and 7 days after the surgery, the cast is removed from the nose.

However, the rhinoplasty surgery can be more inclusive when compared to septoplasty. Because, septoplasty surgery is more on the functional side of this. Septoplasty surgery is a breathing correction procedure. But, on the other hand, rhinoplasty surgery is mostly concerned about the outer look&shape of the nose.

Now, there are different techniques in both septoplasty and rhinoplasty surgeries, which are called open or closed technique. Closed approach has a faster recovery process in both septoplasty and rhinoplasty surgeries.

For both procedures, in the first 10 days, the face and the nose will stay swelled. But after the acute healing stage, the facial swelling will start to fade away. The nasal swelling will continue. In both, septoplasty and rhinoplasty surgeries, around 3 months after the surgery, the nose will start to settle in its place more.

Due to swelling, in the first 1-2 months the nose might look more upturned that expected, this is due to internal swelling. There is no pain expected post both procedures.

One should not do heavy cardio exercises or swim until 4 weeks post surgery. Again, wearing glasses is forbidden until 2 months post surgery, also the patient has to sleep on their back and keep their had elevated for around 1 month post surgery.

Functional Rhinoplasty vs Septoplasty

Functional rhinoplasty means septoplasty. When the nose is tilted towards one side more, that means that side’s airways canal is blocked, when the axis of the nose is brought to midline, the nose will start to breathe properly again.

Also, rhinoplasty surgery can include septoplasty surgery. Meaning, the nose has deviated septum(if the nose is crooked), it would be brought to midline to correct breathing difficulties.

If a patient’s only concerns are about breathing difficulties and do not want to change the shape of their nose. Then, they should proceed with functional rhinoplasty(septoplasty), but if their issues are both functional and aesthetical, then a rhinoplasty surgery should take place.

Because rhinoplasty surgery refers to shape of the nose and helps removing the hump on the nose, or giving a better definition to the tip of the nose, or if the tip is droopy or hanging, it can be upward rotated through the rhinoplasty procedure.

A nose being functional should be a priority in both septoplasty and rhinoplasty surgeries. If a nose is not able to breathe properly but has a beautiful shape, then it does not mean anything. A nose should be able to breathe well first.

Septoplasty vs Rhinoplasty Costs

There is a range for both septoplasty and rhinoplasty surgeries. If a nose is touched before, then this means a revision rhinoplasty surgery will be performed, which affects the price. So, for more info on pricing, please contact our team from this link.

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