Ethnic Rhinoplasty is a common cosmetic procedure for refining the appearance of the nose of patients of many different ethnic heritages such as African American, Hispanic, Asian, and Middle-Eastern. The goals of ethnic rhinoplasty are to enhance a nose to give it more definition, or to reduce the size of the nose so that it harmonizes with the patient’s other facial features — all while maintaining and respecting the patients ethnic heritage.
Nose job surgery for patients with a non-Caucasian nose is challenging. When approaching the nonwhite patient, it is of the utmost importance to understand the patient’s goals and desires. At the center of this dialogue should be the patient’s expectations of whether or not he or she wishes to maintain nasal features of their ethnic heritage or if he or she desires a nose that tries to conform to the “norms” of the white nose. For ethnic patients who do wish a more white nose, it is equally important to address the issue that a “white” nose may not be in harmony with the rest of that patient’s ethnic facial features.
Different ethnicities require different techniques. Noses in African American and Asian patients frequently require building up (augmenting) the nasal bridge and narrowing the nostril base via alar base resection. This involves removing a wedge shaped piece of tissue where the nostril walls meet the cheeks. The overall result is nose that doesn’t appear as wide from the front.
Hispanic and Middle Eastern noses typically require reductive techniques — removal of bone and cartilage to give a more subtle appearance to the nose. The techniques used include hump removal, tip refinement (narrowing of the tip) and tip reshaping.
Choosing an expert rhinoplasty surgeon is important when considering ethnic rhinoplasty. Not all cosmetic surgeons are well-versed in the techniques required to obtain the best results for patients that look natural.