Nose Shortening After Rhinoplasty

There are patients who underwent rhinoplasty and noticed a gradual shortening of the nose. This shortening of the nose is manifested by more nostril showing and nasal tip turning upward toward the forehead. When the patients measure the distance of the nose from the root or the radix of the nose to the nasal tip, they will notice that the nose has actually gotten shorter.

The reason why this happens is that an implant such as silicone was used to augment or enlarge the nose. When silicone is inserted into the nose, over time, a capsule can form. A capsule is a scar tissue that envelops the nose. When this occurs, the scar tissue contracts the surrounding skin and the nose in essence “shrinks.”

This shortening of the nose can occur within the first year or over many decades.

Once shortening has occurred, the only way to correct this problem is to remove the silicone implant. The nose is reconstructed by freeing up the scar tissue from the skin and dissecting the skin and soft tissue back to its ideal position. This is then followed by inserted one’s own cartilage from the rib. Rib cartilage is the most ideal for the nose because the cartilage is strong enough to elongate the nasal tip and provide a structural framework for the overall nose.

When the nose is properly reconstructed using one’s own cartilage, a short nose can effectively be elongated / corrected into an ideal, beautiful nose.