Is Rhinoplasty Surgery or Revision Rhinoplasty Even Worth It?

Doctor Answers 17

Worth it or not usually depends on the surgeon

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This is a question we face a lot in our practice. If you spend time on rhinoplasty discussion forums, you will leave feeling very depressed about your chances for the nose you’ve always wanted. These sites are chock full of nightmare stories of bad results and even worse interactions between the patients and surgeons. Having had a bad result already, many patients find themselves understandably bitter, suspicious of doctors, and despairing for the nose they had.

It’s enough to scare off someone considering a first-time rhinoplasty. More sad is that many revision rhinoplasty patients are so scarred from their experience that they are too scared to even think about jumping in the pool again after they’ve almost drowned, even if they can afford to take the chance! And, the picture may not appear much brighter if you read our blogs.

Patients say, “You talk about high revision rates and how hard the surgery is…is it even worth it?”

There are few surgeons who make a practice of doing rhinoplasty, let alone revision rhinoplasty. The technical challenges seem insurmountable in many cases and it can also be very hard to win back a patient’s trust. Well, the story should not be one of doom and gloom. Just because rhinoplasty and, especially, revision rhinoplasty are challenging does not mean that they cannot be consistently done well.

If you find a rhinoplasty expert, and a handful can be found in every part of the country, you should have reason for cautious optimism and even excitement. That’s because a good rhinoplasty surgeon should be able to promise you, barring any unforeseen complication, a very high probability of a very good result.

If not, you shouldn’t have the surgery and your surgeon shouldn’t suggest you do. Modern techniques, used appropriately, will allow for a high degree of precision and for very specific alterations to be made. And, an experienced surgeon will tell you what changes are outside the realm of reality.

Yes, healing can be unpredictable. Yes, there are no guarantees with an operation such as this. And, yes, we can’t tell how what we do will change your nose down to the submillimeter. But we can get darned close.

So, is rhinoplasty or revision rhinoplasty worth it? First, you have to find the right surgeon you can really trust. Then, you have to look inside and be really honest with yourself about your motivations, your obsessions, and what changes it will take to make you happy and settled with your nose. Will you really be happy with an 80% or 90% improvement, if not perfection? And, finally, you have to decide if that hope of a chance for happiness with your nose is something you want badly enough to make the pool worth trying out.

Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 52 reviews

When is Rhinoplasty "Worth It?"

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The answer is revealed in consultation with a Rhinoplasty expert.

Clarify your goals and expectations. Express your concerns, fears.

Paul C. Zwiebel, MD
Denver Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 45 reviews

Benefits of revision rhinoplasty

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This is a great question.  When is any cosmetic procedure 'worth it'?  

First off, let's assume there are no functional issues, such as nasal obstruction.  If the only issue is aesthetics, then it becomes a value judgment on your part.  Hopefully, your surgeon can help you understand what is possible (not guaranteed) for you, and what the likelihood of success is.

 If you get this honest assessment, then you can think about whether the changes you seek are (1) likely to be attained and (2) worth the risk of surgery (there are always risks, however small and (3) worth the cost associated with the surgery.

I hope this helps.  Always seek as much information as you feel you need to make an informed decision (this does not necessarily mean 'technical details', but professional opinions regarding your situation).


Dr. Sam P. Most

Sam Most, MD
Bay Area Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 69 reviews

Is rhinoplasty worth it?

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No one can answer this question other than the individual who asks it. If a patient has a great desire for a change in their nasal contour, then achieving a great rhinoplasty result would definitely be worth it. But for the patient who only has mild concerns with their nose, the surgery may not be worth the investment (financially and emotionally). In the end, nothing can substitute for a consultation with an experienced rhinoplasty surgeon. If a surgeon spends the time with you, then you will be able to better answer this question.

Ryan Greene, MD, PhD
Fort Lauderdale Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 85 reviews

Rhinoplasty is a personal decision and needs to be worth it to the patient

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One really cannot answer this question for the masses.  Every one of my patients who has had a rhinoplasty has felt that the surgery is worth it to them.  I think the patient has to decide what they really want and what they need.  Then the surgeon has to determine if that is possible and then deliver.

Raghu Athre, MD
Houston Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 94 reviews

Is Rhinoplasty Surgery Worth It?

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This is an interesting question, but probably  better answered by the person asking it.  The only patients who enter my Operating Room for Rhinoplasty are those who present a reasonable explanation for what they would like to achieve with Surgery, and have anatomic findings that can be addressed with the techniques available.  Rhinoplasty has many bad public advertisements in the form of numerous celebrities' strange surgical results. If you are seriously considering Rhinoplasty, please see a Surgeon who takes a special interest in it, and review the changes you would like to make in addition to the concerns you have about the procedure.

Stephen Prendiville, MD
Fort Myers Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 103 reviews


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The only person who can answer the question, "Should I get a rhinoplasty?" is you.  A consultation with an experienced, non-pushy, rhinoplasty surgeon can present to you what potential changes to your nose will look like via computer imaging, show before and afters relevant to your case, and discuss the risks and benefits of the procedure.  

Anil R. Shah, MD
Chicago Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 180 reviews

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

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Revision rhinoplasty may be worth it to you if you are dissatisfied with the appearance of your nose and it is worth the downtime to have it revised.  If you decide it is worthwhile to you, then seek out a board-certified plastic surgeon or facial plastic surgeon who specializes in revision rhinoplasty as it is more challenging than most primary rhinoplasties.  Review before and after photos of different surgeons' websites.  Ask many questions.  It may be helpful to seek out a member of The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery as well as The Rhinoplasty Society.

Sanjay Grover, MD
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 244 reviews

Many Patients Happy with Rhinoplasty Results

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To say whether or not a rhinoplasty is "worth it" depends on the patient and their objectives. Rhinoplasty is one of the most popular surgeries performed because it can provide balance and harmony of the face. Most patients are very satisfied with their result, however, there are always patients who envisioned their nose differently. Revision rhinoplasty is beneficial to correct small areas to achieve the desired result or to correct an ill-performed rhinoplasty.

It is so important to make sure you do your homework before selecting a rhinoplasty surgeon because surgery, especially on your face, is a permanent change. I would recommend starting out at Here you can select from surgeons who are board certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery. After that you should narrow down your selection based on their specialty training, reviews and before and after pictures.

Tarick K. Smiley, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 117 reviews

Rhinoplasty and revision rhinoplasty can be extremely effective

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Rhinoplasty is a popular and effective surgery to recontour the shape of your nose. Keep in mind that the tissues of the nose are delicate and that a small change can produce a very significant change to your overall appearance. For this reason, it is essential to only work with a board-certified plastic surgeon who has great deal of experience in rhinoplasty surgery. They will be able to assess you, understand your needs, and examine your tissue to see if it is possible to accomplish your goals.
In our practice, we find the use of digital photography and digital morphing software to be essential. We morph the photograph of every patient as this is an excellent education and communication tool that allows us to fully understand what the goals of the patient are and to show them what is realistically possible. Be sure that he find a surgeon that can offer this important tool to you as well.

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.