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What is the difference between an open and closed rhinoplasty?

A rhinoplasty procedure reshapes, corrects or reconstructs the nose to achieve more aesthetically pleasing proportions and to enhance ones' physical appearance.

Tagged: Facial Treatments

What is the difference between an open and closed rhinoplasty?

A rhinoplasty procedure reshapes, corrects or reconstructs the nose to achieve more aesthetically pleasing proportions and to enhance ones' physical appearance.

Patients will usually undergo either open rhinoplasty or closed rhinoplasty, depending on the extent of work required. But what is the difference between these two surgeries and which one could be right for you?

What is an open rhinoplasty?

An open rhinoplasty is an invasive nose operation which is widely used for patients who need more extensive nose contouring or nose reduction.

The surgeon will make incisions in the columella, which is the skin between a person’s nostrils, underneath the nose. Following the incisions, the skin is lifted up allowing access inside the nasal cavity to allow the surgeon to perform reshaping. After the surgery is complete, the columella is sutured and the nose will be secured in place with tape and a splint. The splint will keep the nose in place during the healing process and normally will be removed after one week. Open rhinoplasty is excellent for patients with issues such as genetic or structural deformities, trauma to the nose requiring grafting and unsatisfactory results from a previous nose job.

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What is a closed rhinoplasty?

Closed rhinoplasty is the most common type of nose surgery. This type of rhinoplasty leaves no external scars as all the incisions are done inside the nose.

The closed rhinoplasty does not have an incision across the skin of the columella between the nostrils, but is carried out through the mucosa of the inside of the nose. The surgeon does not have the direct view of the nasal skeleton and therefore it is a technique for the more experienced surgeon.

What is better an open or closed rhinoplasty?

A closed rhinoplasty leaves no external scars, reduces the likelihood of nasal irritation and is a much shorter, less invasive, form of surgery. As a result, a closed rhinoplasty has a faster recovery time than an open rhinoplasty.

However, an open rhinoplasty is required for patients who require more extensive work to reshape or resize their nose. 

In short, neither operation is ‘better’ - it depends on an individual’s requirements and the desired outcome of the surgery.

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Is closed rhinoplasty cheaper?

A surgical rhinoplasty procedure starts from £6,900 at the Cadogan Clinic.

Given inevitable variations in facial anatomy between patients, nose job costs are highly dependent on the complexity of the procedure required, and the technique employed. Therefore a closed rhinoplasty could be cheaper than open rhinoplasty. The final price will be confirmed following a patient’s face-to-face consultation with one of our expert surgeons.

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How long does a closed rhinoplasty take?

A straightforward closed rhinoplasty procedure at the Cadogan Clinic can take as little as one hour under a general anesthetic. More complex nasal surgeries can take up to three hours. The time will vary from person to person and the amount of work required on the nose.

Following the procedure, a patient will recover in our ambulatory recovery rooms for between two to three hours. Once our specialist nursing team are happy that the initial recovery is complete, the patient will be allowed to leave the clinic, accompanied by a friend or family member.

Does a closed rhinoplasty heal faster?

A closed rhinoplasty can heal faster than an open rhinoplasty as it is a less-invasive procedure. But of course recovery times can vary from person to person and recovery can be greatly assisted if a patient follows the aftercare instructions.

We ask that patients take at least two weeks off work to rest and recuperate and also not to drive during this time. Sleeping on the back is recommended for four weeks post-surgery. UV light should be avoided for between two and four weeks in order to lessen the likelihood of scarring.

In terms of physical activity, restricted sexual activity can be resumed after four weeks, but the gym and strenuous exercise should be avoided for six weeks. If a patient follows these instructions, we would expect them to recover by six to eight weeks.

We ask that patients come in and see our nursing team one week after surgery to ensure incision sites have been properly reviewed. At this juncture we also recommend meeting with one of our on site aestheticians to discuss ongoing treatment to support the healing and scarring process.

A final check-up will take place six weeks after surgery.

Where can I get a closed rhinoplasty in the UK?

We offer closed rhinoplasty here at the London-based Cadogan Clinic. We also offer open rhinoplasty, septo-rhinoplasty, rhino-tip surgery and Oriental and African nose augmentation. We can advise you on which type of nose surgery would be the most appropriate for you.

A team of the very best rhinoplasty surgeons practising in the UK today carry out rhinoplasty here at the Cadogan Clinic. Our specialists have performed many thousands of rhinoplasty cases between them, and regularly feature in the media as ranking among the very best rhinoplasty surgeons in the country.

Depending on which consultant you see during your initial appointment with us, you may be offered a visualisation of what outcome you can expect from a closed rhinoplasty via Crysalix 4D imaging technology used at the clinic.

We are an award-winning specialist cosmetic clinic, located in Sloane Street, Chelsea, with a track record of delivering safe, high quality cosmetic surgery. Unlike many of our competitors, here at the Cadogan Clinic, we use the latest anaesthetic technologies to minimise patient downtime, and allow you to return home on the day of your procedure.

Our nursing team provide a dedicated 24/7 oncall service during recovery and we offer a complimentary consultation and treatment with our onsite team of aestheticians to ensure you heal and scar quickly and efficiently.

Please reach out to us today and we will put you in touch with one of our expert surgeons to discuss what we can do to help you reach your personal body goals.

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Treatments mentioned in this article

The operation is most suited to patients who have good bone structure who are not wishing to drastically change the appearance of their nose but are seeking slight improvements such as lifting the tip, correcting deformity or addressing the length of the nose.

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The nose is the central feature of the face and how it looks can determine how we feel about our overall appearance. Rhinoplasty refers to a group of surgical procedures that change the size, shape and position of the nose to provide an effective solution for the many people who are unhappy with the aesthetic appearance of their nose. It is also commonly performed as a medical procedure to correct breathing issues and to help alleviate the symptoms of sleep apnoea, and is consequently one of the most common cosmetic surgery procedures performed across the world.

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