Rhinoplasty is a popular surgery that includes cosmetic and medical procedures designed to enhance the nose’s appearance. When people consider plastic surgery performed on the nose, they often only think about cosmetic rhinoplasty. While cosmetic rhinoplasty focuses on changing the appearance of your nose for aesthetic reasons, functional rhinoplasty is different. Here is why your doctor may suggest functional rhinoplasty.
Difference Between Functional and Cosmetic Rhinoplasty
Though functional rhinoplasty and cosmetic rhinoplasty aim to improve patients’ quality of life, they are different. In cosmetic rhinoplasty, the nose is primarily altered for aesthetic reasons, not necessarily to improve breathing. If you feel self-conscious about your nose’s appearance or feel that it doesn’t match your face, you might seek a cosmetic rhinoplasty.
However, functional rhinoplasty is a necessary medical procedure that corrects the functional problems of the nose by reshaping the nasal structure. Functional rhinoplasty aims to improve the nose’s functionality and resolve problems caused by trauma or weak nasal walls. Should you have breathing and sinus issues, you may consider functional rhinoplasty to alleviate your symptoms.
Medical Issues Functional Rhinoplasty Can Correct
Functional rhinoplasty corrects physical deformities of the nose that prevent proper airflow. It’s common for the following medical conditions to be treated with functional rhinoplasty:
1. Deviated septum
A deviated septum occurs when the septum develops away from the cartilage or bone, either because of trauma or a congenital disability. Functional rhinoplasty corrects the deviated septum by straightening crooked bone or cartilage. Apart from improving breathing, this treatment also improves your facial symmetry.
2. Chronic sinus problems
Congested airways increase your chances of experiencing frequent sinus infections and chronic sinusitis. Functional rhinoplasty helps open your airways for better breathing and can help fix your sinus concerns.
3. Sleep apnea
Snoring and breathing pauses are common characteristics of obstructive sleep apnea, which causes breathing interruptions that disrupt your sleep. The medical procedure allows air through the nasal passages, clearing the blockage.
4. Removal of Nasal Polyps
Severe allergies can lead to nasal polyps. While these polyps are benign and are barely noticeable, larger polyps may obstruct airflow and cause breathing difficulties, loss of smell, and pain.
5. Facial Reconstruction
Functional rhinoplasty also treats the impact of trauma or nose injuries. A broken nose may cause facial deformities that impact nasal function. However, these issues can often be corrected surgically.
6. Cleft Lip
The cleft lip is a birth deformity that occurs during development in the womb. At times, the cleft lip extends to the base of the nose, leading to a deformed nose and narrowed nasal passages. Functional rhinoplasty can improve nasal function by reducing unevenness and opening nasal airways.
Functional rhinoplasty can play an instrumental role in improving the overall functionality and appearance of the nose. The procedure aims to correct breathing issues and restore healthy nasal function. Aside from treating medical concerns such as a deviated septum, sleep apnea, sinus problems, and nasal polyps, functional rhinoplasty often provides aesthetic benefits.
It’s crucial to select a specialized surgeon for your rhinoplasty procedure to avoid complications. If you think you may benefit from a functional rhinoplasty, you should discuss the matter with a trusted medical professional.