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Narrowing Nasal Bridge & Tip

Is it possible to narrow/thin the bridge of the nose without using any grafts or breaking any bones? Also, what procedure is commonly used to narrow a broad tip?

Doctor Answers (4)

Rhinoplasty without breaking the nasal bones

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Don't get fixated on whether or not the bone will be broken during the surgery.  A variety of techniques is available to the surgeon but the method used to improve the appearance of the nose will be dependent on its condition, including whether the problem has resulted from a cartilagenous or bony defect, or both.   The same concept is applicable to thinning the nasal tip, including a strut or tip graft or thinning the tissues.  Seek a consultation with a board certified plastic surgeon or ENT who can clarify what options will be available in your particular case.  All noses are unique and require an individualized approach.

New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

Narrowing the nasal bridge and tip

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There are many techniques that are used to narrow the nasal tip.  This can be done through either closed or open rhinoplasty.  Suturing techniques of the nasal tip cartilages to narrow the area include intradomal and interdomal suturing.  Cartilage can also be removed from the lower lateral cartilages of the tip to narrow and refine the tip itself.  Narrowing the tip and the bridge does not require any cartilage grafting.  The only reasons the nasal bones are broken is to narrow the bridge, not the tip.  

William Portuese, MD
Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 60 reviews


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The upper half of the bridge is composed of bone and the lower half of cartilage. Breaking the bones is a bit harsh in terms of describing the bridge narrowing procedure. That implies the process is not fully controlled. In reality the bones are freed up from their base and then moved towards the midline with the surgeon's fingers. There really is no other way to narrow the upper bridge. You cannot rasp or burr it down because the issue is not bone thickness.

Without a photo or face to face exam it is not possible to say what is contributing to the "broad tip" and therefore what procedure would be applicable. If the broadness is in the part of the tip furthest out from the face that is generally addressed by suturing the C-shaped cartilages in the tip together. If the broadness is at the part of the tip closest to the lip that is generally addressed by removing a small pieces of skin at the outer base of the nostrils.

My response to your question/post does not represent formal medical advice or constitute a doctor patient relationship. You need to consult with i.e. personally see a board certified plastic surgeon in order to receive a formal evaluation and develop a doctor patient relationship.

Aaron Stone, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon

Rhinoplasty or Nose Job for wide nasal bones

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Hello Debz: Each patient is different and what technique is used to narrow the nose bridge depends on the patients unique nasal anatomy. Usually the nasal bones are narrowed by breaking the bones but sometimes the portion of the nasal bridge that is wide consists of cartilage and not bone. In such a case, the bones would not need to be broken but the cartilage of the nasal bridge would need to be reshaped and sculpted surgically. There are various procedures used to narrow a broad tip and again the technique used depends on the patient's unique anatomy. Techniques that I commonly use are cephalic trim, columellar strut graft, tip graft and vertical dome division. Sometimes these techniques are used individually and other times, they are used in combination. Of course, whenever you are narrowing the nose, it is important to preserve the function of the nose to enable you to breathe properly and a good rhinoplasty surgeon will be skilled at preserving function as well as reshaping the outside of your nose. My best, Anita Mandal, M.D.

Anita Mandal, MD
Palm Beach Facial Plastic Surgeon

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.