Is It Possible to Reduce Nose Bridge Height and Bring Tip Back Up After Rhinoplasty?

I had a rhinoplasty last year. I had a ski slope nose. My surgeon used cartilage grafts from my ear to build my bridge up and he also brought my tip down. I find that my old nose fit my face better (I have very soft features) and I don't like how my new nose looks from the front or sides. Is it possible to remove the cartilage grafts and bring my nose tip back up? If so, how do I find the best surgeon for my revision case?

Doctor Answers 15

Revision rhinoplasty for nasal bridge and tip

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Is it possible to reduce the nose bridge height and bring the tip back up after rhinoplasty? 
It is unfortunate that you have to undergo rhinoplasty for the second time.  The old cartilage grafts can be removed to bring the nose back to its original position.  The tip can also be lifted up but that will depend upon what techniques were performed at the time of the rhinoplasty.  It is important to find a surgeon who has performed thousands of rhinoplasty and revision rhinoplasty surgeries.  It is also important to have excellent repoire with your surgeon on this second endeavor.  Have the surgery performed in a certified surgery center and be put to sleep by a board certified anesthesiologist. 

Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 155 reviews

Unhappy with your rhinoplasty? A revison rhinoplasty specialist can help determine the best treatment for you

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Unfortunately the revision rate in Rhinoplasty ranges from 5% to 15% in the medial literature. The people publishing these articles are doing the most rhinplasties, so imagine the rate for doctors who only do this procedure occasionally. Grafts can be remove and nasal tips both raised and lowered to achieve a more attractive nose.Want your old nose back? You can't go backward, only forward and restore a more attractive noses.  When patients ask me to restore their old noses, they usually don't really mean that; they only liked their old nose better. I like using computer imaging to simulate potential changes in revision Rhinoplasty.

Steven J. Pearlman, MD
New York Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 136 reviews

Revision rhinoplasty and grafts

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Removing onlay grafts and shield grafts (probably that's what was used to derogate your tip) are some of the easier things to do in revision cases. Lifting a tip up is also not particularly difficult. Revision cases in which reversing aggressive tissue removal tend to be the most difficult kinds; especially if a deviation still persists. If you find an experienced surgeon I'm sure you will obtain the change you are seeking. All the best.

Richard W. Westreich, MD
Manhattan Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 55 reviews

Cartilage grafts can be removed in revision nasal surgery

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It is certainly possible to remove cartilage grafts placed in the nose and lift the tip by having revision rhinoplasty surgery. I would suggest you find a surgeon who offers computer imaging so you can see the possible changes that can be made by surgery. Also bring old photographs with you and describe what you liked and didn't like about your first nose.  I would recommend getting more than one opinion and see which surgeon best understands your surgical goals..

Theda C. Kontis, MD
Baltimore Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 42 reviews

Revision rhinoplasty

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Hi Melinda,

Well, I'm sorry you went through  a rhinoplasty only to be disappointed with the results.  It should be fairly easy to remove the grafts. Secondary tip work is often done, but the details of what you would need are impossible to know without pictures. Have you spoken with the plastic surgeon who did the first operation? It would seem that this person is fairly well-versed in doing rhinoplasty, but ask if he or she does many secondary or "re-do" types of operations.  I wouldn't hesitate to ask that surgeon in a nice way if they could recommend someone for a second opinion. They shouldn't be upset with you for that. Take it slowly and don't rush in to anything. Good luck.

Paul W. Loewenstein, MD
Milwaukee Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 32 reviews

Old nose back

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You can have the grafts removed or thinned and the tip elevated. It may look similar but it will never exactly be your old nose due to surgery and scar tissue. You need to think carefully about this. I am presuming that building up your nose with ear cartilage was a plan that you agreed to and were on board with for your first surgery. The desired result was achieved but you have changed your mind. This is not something that you can keep redoing without consequence. Once you have your old nose will you want a different modification?

Michael L. Schwartz, MD
West Palm Beach Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

Is it possible to bring my tip after my previous Rhinoplasty?

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  Yes, it's possible to remove the conchal ear cartilage graft from your nasal bridge and rotate up the nasasl tip, although pictures of the front and profile would help in the evaluation.  I have performed Rhinoplasty, revision Rhinoplasty and all manner of plastic and cosmetic surgery procedures for over 20 years and IMHO, the best way to select your plastic and cosmetic surgeon, Rhinoplasty surgeon included, is by their aesthetic judgement.  You must understand beauty in order to create in through surgery.

Francis R. Palmer, III, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 28 reviews

Revision rhinoplasty for nasal tip and bridge of nose

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Revision rhinoplasty is certainly more challenging than a primary operation. It should be performed by someone with expertise in Rhinoplasty. In your area, I would recommend Dr. James Ridgway in Seattle.

Best wishes,

-Dr. Asaria

Jamil Asaria, MD
Toronto Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 136 reviews

Revision rhinoplasty for the disliked nose.

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This revision requires a surgeon who has a great deal of experience to prevent an even worse nose after the revision. Talk to actual patients that the surgeon has done as well as photos.

Toby Mayer, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 36 reviews

Revising rhinoplasty, getting the old nose back

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It is troubling to get a nice result, yet from the patient perspective, find that the 'old' nose was the better look. Revision can remove the grafts and work backward to your old nose. With scar there are uncertainties as to just how close you can come, though computer imaging should be must to help to see where you are going before you get there.

Best of luck,


Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 43 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.