How common is it to remove bone along with septal cartilage during rhinoplasty?

I had alar rim grafts inserted during a botched primary rhinoplasty. During my revision with rib grafting, my surgeon found these were made from bone and he replaced them. Is it common to find bone in rhinoplasty grafts?

Doctor Answers 3

Rhinoplasty grafts

Bone can be use for rhinoplasty grafting but it is less malleable and can resorb.  Use of bone is also challenging in the nasal tip or ala as it can be felt.  If the septal cartilage is absent, or there is not enough for the planned grafts, ear cartilage or rib cartilage are often used as a secondary grafting material.


Los Angeles Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

What is a graft of the nose made of?

A nose graft can be made of just cartilage like from septum and/or ear/rib or it can have some bone like from the hip or even from the nose that has been removed and used in different area.

Edward J. Domanskis, MD
Newport Beach Plastic Surgeon
4.4 out of 5 stars 27 reviews

Bone for rhinoplasty grafts

In my experience, bone is generally not a great option for rhinoplasty grafts. There are few exceptions (upper dorsal augmentation, occasional strut). They tend to remain stiff and can often be felt through the skin. Cartilage is far superior. If the septum can't provide enough cartilage for grafting then it is usually better to harvest more from the ear or rib before resorting to bone. 

Justin Cohen, MD
Washington DC Otolaryngologist
5.0 out of 5 stars 21 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.