What is Gore-tex and when is it used?

Doctor Answers 6

Gore-Tex Is A Man-made Material Used To RaiseThe Bridge Of The Nose.

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Dear Alloy-Smile; Gore-Tex, an implant material, has been around a long time. Because you are from Wisconsin where it gets very cold (I know; I attended the University of Wisconsin), you might know that Gore-Tex was originally used as a ski jacket material because it retains heat. Then other uses were discovered. Gore-Tex is reasonably well tolerated by the body.This has always been an important issue when implants are going to be put in the nose.I am wondering what specific imperfection in your nose makes you believe that Gore-Tex would be helpful.If your bridge is very low, it may be a reasonable answer.Generally, the material does better on the bridge than it does on the tip of the nose. There are other implant materials that are used and, frankly, Gore-Tex has never been my number one choice.One reason is that if the implant does not seat itself in the ideal location and it becomes necessary to remove, it's difficult because your body's tissues grow into the Gore-Tex. I prefer the solid silicone implants.Silicone implants with no holes are very easy to remove, and that's important.To me, the ideal implant is one that is easy to put in and easy to remove.Silicone implants have withstood the test of time in the United States for over 60 years.Medical-grade silicone is used in common medical devices including internally-placed defibrillators, artificial joints and artificial heart valves.Of course, I am proud to say it is also the material of which the Kotler Nasal Airway™ is made.If you are considering nasal surgery, check out the Kotler Nasal Airway™ and learn why patients and doctors are jumping on this invention to improve the immediate postoperative patient experience. Best wishes and On Wisconsin! Robert Kotler, MD, FACS
Over 4,500 nasal procedures performed

Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 89 reviews

Gore-tex in rhinoplasty surgery

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Gore-tex has been used for many years to augment the bridge in rhinoplasty and ethnic rhinoplasty. It is soft and very well tolerated with low infection and extrusion rates. Make sure your surgeon is exprienced in the safe use of this implant material.

Roy A. David, MD
San Diego Facial Plastic Surgeon

Gore-tex as a Facial Implant Material

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Gore-tex is a well known facial implant material that has been used from anything from facial bone augmentation to a subcutaneous implant for lips, nasolabial folds and in dorsal augmentation in rhinoplasty. It is flexible and easily compressible and is modified form of microporous plastic. It has a fairly good track record of facial implant use provided it is properly used with good soft tissue cover.

Gore-tex revealed!

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Gore-Tex is a trademarked commercial name for expanded polytetrafluoroethylene (ePTFE) waterproof, breathable fabric. It was developed in the late 1960's in a patented process that creates a material that is breathable to water vapor, but impervious to liquids, as it has a microporous structure that is approximately 70% air, with pore size of about 1/20,000 the size of a water droplet or around 9 billion pores per square inch.

Originally used in rainwear, shoes, and tents, Gore-tex fabric's porous nature and inertness in human tissue make it useful in medical applications where tissue ingrowth and vascularity occur. It has been made into artificial blood vessels, tissue patches, sutures, heart valves, and other applications.

In plastic surgery, Gore-Tex is used as onlay grafts in rhinoplasty, tissue patches for chest wall reconstruction after cancer removal, abdominal wall reinforcement or hernia repair, and in sutures where strength, flexibility, and tissue incorporation are desirable charactersitics. I use Gore-Tex in facelifts, certain kinds of breast lifts, and as tissue replacement/reinforcement.

The uses of Gore-Tex are limited only by the need and application-specific requirements, as well as the experience of the plastic surgeon in cosmetic and reconstructive surgery. It does not break down, is extremely durable, and although it can become infected, the very tissue ingrowth and vascularity that the product allows also serves as a way of protecting the material from bacterial infection.

Gore-Tex has a long and safe medical use history. If your surgeon has suggested its use and you have more questions, please speak to your surgeon. You need not be afraid of its use at all. Choose your surgeon wisely and listen to his/her recommendations and discussion, not only about the surgical procedure and usage anticipated, but also about the pros and cons of any material planned for use in your surgery. Best wishes! Dr. Tholen

Gore -tex

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Gore-tex is a synthetic material with multiple medical and non medical uses.  In Plastic Surgery it is frequently used to augment an area of the face or straighten areas of tissue weakness.  One can also go to Wall-Mart or Target stores and find it in a host of clothing items.  I would be more interested in where it has been suggested to use Gore-tex in your case and whether there are better substitutes.

Dr. Corbin 


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Gore-Tex is a brand name for a plastic material that is used as a substitute for tissues throughout the body.  It is fairly commonly used for building up the roof of the nose ("dorsal augmentation", and is predictable and generally leads to excellent rhinoplasty results.  However, you should be aware that there is a very small but real risk for infection with the material, so choose a surgeon who has experience with using it.

John Frodel, MD
Atlanta 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.