I need to narrow my nostrils. I worry about the scars being noticeable like there are "buggers" coming out of both nostrils. Am I being too concerned? How noticeable is this?
How Bad Are the Scars from Alar Narrowing?
Doctor Answers (10)
The scarring from alar narrowing is generally quite acceptable. All incisions in and around the nose heal with some degree of scarring. Meticulous closure and approximation of the edges will minimize the visibility of these scars. I doubt the scarring will be as significant as you have visualized. My only suggestion is that you ask your surgeon what type of narrowing procedure they have in mind as some noses require nostril narrowing and others require alar base reduction, too.
Scars from alar-narrowing
With regards to an alarplasty, there are very small incisions located at the bottom of the floor of the nose, right at the nostril margin, in the sill of the nose. These are very unnoticeable. We do not recommend the entire alar reduction incision, which goes around the entire alar rim, which can be noticeable. Alarplasty is simply a small wedge of 3 to 4 mm of skin at the floor and sill of the nose, which reduces the actual width of the nostril. Stitches are dissolvable and fall out in a week, and then incisions are unnoticeable.
Scarring from alar nasal narrowing is not bad if done by an expert
The key to hiding the scars from alar narrowing also called weir alar resection, is proper technique.
If the incision is placed at the correct angle near the alar crease or fold, the scars are usually well hidden. The key is to preserve the curve of the ala and not flatten it.
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Alar reduction requires experience
Alar narrowing or nostril reduction, is also known as Weir base reduction. I place the incision in the crease between the ala and the facial groove. This minimizes the visibility. As always, a surgeon familiar w/ Rhinoplasty surgery and having experience in this procedure is a must. Only about 15% of my cases require this procedure, although it is commonly required in ethnic Rhinoplasty.
Don't place Rhinoplasty incision in alar rim crease
If your doctor places the incision in the crease of the alar rim then the chance of webbing is great. If the incision is slightly above the crease the scars are imperceptible. Check with your doctor to see where they like to place the scars.
Alar base surgery
Incisions around the alar base for base reduction if performed correctly, usually leave scars that are almost imperceptible. Of course, skin quality and healing quality can affect the results.
Narrowing your nostrils may be performed during Rhinoplasty Surgery.
The scarring from alar base resection is usually minimal. These are limited to the base of your nose, so the location is also favorable. You should consult several board-certified Rhinoplasty specialists, and view many photos of alar narrowing before proceeding.
I hope this is helpful, and best regards.
Everyone heals differently and it all depends on how you heal. But as a plastic surgeon we put the scars in an area that usually heals well and is not noticeable.
Hope that answers your question.
Scars from nostril narrowing
The scars created from nostril narrowing are designed to heal in the crease of the nostril. When done correctly, it is very inconspicuous.
If you are undergoing this procedure, make sure to ask your surgeon to show you examples so you may have a good idea of what to expect.
These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.