Which is Better - a 1mm Silicone Implant, or Using my Own Cartilage for my Nasal Dorsum?

I am of Asian background and planning on having my rhinoplasty. The surgeon recommended he uses a 1mm silicone implant for my nasal dorsum. He said that this isn't to make my bridge higher but to smooth and cover any irregular contour. He is also going to perform tip plasty using septal cartilage and tip debulking. I like that he's using my own septal cartilage but worried re. the silicone. Is 1mm of it ok, or should he use my own cartilage for the bridge, and if so, how can he do this? Thanks!

Doctor Answers 13

1mm silicone implant or cartilage for Asian rhinoplasty

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

While it is usually best to use the patient’s natural cartilage when performing a rhinoplasty, small silicone implants are well tolerated in the Asian population.  If there is only 1 mm of augmentation required, it is probably advantageous to use the patient’s own cartilage rather than a synthetic implant.  If 3-4 mm of augmentation were necessary, then a silicone implant would be the best option.

Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 158 reviews

Dorsal augmentation in Asian rhinoplasty

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Your own cartilage will make a safer and more permanent grafting material than silicone.  Your surgeon may or may not be comfortable building up your bridge with your own cartilage - if this is the case, I would recommend finding someone who is rather than insisting your surgeon use a technique he/she is uncomfortable with.  There are a number of reliable techniques for using cartilage along the dorsum.  

Paul S. Nassif, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 49 reviews

Silicone vs cartilage for bridge

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

It sounds like your bridge has some irregularities and if possible I would prefer to correct the irregularities rather than placing an implant. The other option for covering irregularities is to use your own temporalis fascia. This can be used to drape over the bridge to make it smoother without the resultant augmentation.

Thomas Buonassisi, MD
Vancouver Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 114 reviews

Correction options for irregular contour deformity of nose bridge

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

I wish I knew why you have an irregular contour deformity of the dorsum. My first choice would've been correcting the deformity without using a material. If this is not an option, I would recommend using your cartilage. If you also need a significant augmentation then I may consider using an implant.

Eric In Choe, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 51 reviews

Autologous grafts during rhinoplasty

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

The risk of infection, migration and extrusion for silicone implants along the dorsum is much, much lower than silicone implants in the tip.  However, it's still not as safe as using your own tissue and cartilage (autologous grafts).  For that reason, I prefer autologous grafts versus synthetic in rhinoplasty.  

Donald B. Yoo, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 64 reviews

Which is Better - a 1mm Silicone Implant, or Using my Own Cartilage for my Nasal Dorsum?

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Some surgeons will use silicone, Gore-tex, Medpor for augmentation rhinoplasty. The problems with this approach are infection and possible extrusion of the implant. If you have extra cartilage available (nasal septum, ear, rib) you will be better served using your own tissue which has a much lower risk of complications that synthetic implant, in my experience. I hope this information is helpful.

Stephen Weber MD, FACS

Find a doctor you trust

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Whether silicone or all natural tissue is better is debatable. Your surgeon has made a recommendation. If you have doubts about the advice, seek another doctor. I would not ask him to perform a procedure using your own tissue when he obviously feels more comfortable using an implant. 

Charles S. Lee, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 79 reviews

Autologous tissue better for asian augmentation rhinoplasty

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

USing your own cartilage, in my experience, is Better than using a silicone implant.  There are less chances of infection or implant extrusion.  I like using ear cartilage since most Asians have smaller septal cartilages.  Good luck and take care!


Rhinoplasty, cartilage/silicon implant

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

I prefer your own cartilage being harvested either from your septum or your ear over silicon implant at any time and in any occasion. The surgeon has the ability to shape the cartilage in any size and shape customized to your own need. They would not get infected nor they could become rejected by your body, however it requires  finding a more skillful surgeon to perform the operation.

Your Own Cartilage Is Always A Better Option- As Long As you Have Enough

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

In almost every scenario it is better to use your own tissue if you can. The chances of infection, movement, and rejection are all higher with an implant that is not yours. The primary reason for not using your own cartilage is if you don't have enough of your own material to do what needs to be done.If you haven't had septal surgery before, you should have plenty of septal cartilage to take the place of a 1 mm implant. It is hard to say for sure without photos, but rhinoplasty surgery is very difficult, making getting several opinions prior to scheduling surgery a good idea. I hope this helps.

Michael R. Menachof, MD
Greenwood Village Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.4 out of 5 stars 28 reviews

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.