Removing Scar Tissue in Revision Rhinoplasty?

After consulting the doctor I'm planning to have the operation with, he told me in a revision rhinoplasty he doesn't remove any scar tissue, he just carefully deals with it. Should scar tissue be removed during surgery?

Doctor Answers 3

Addressing scar tissue in revision rhinoplasty

It is very difficult to remove scar tissue form a revision rhinoplasty.  There are layers of scar tissue present and they are addressed at the time of the procedure.  Removing 1 layer of scar tissue just adds another on top of it so it really is fruitless to remove just scar tissue.  Scar tissue can sometimes be softened or melted with cortisone shots in the postoperative period.

Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 143 reviews

Revision rhinoplasty and scar tissue

There are no golden-set rules to follow in revision rhinoplasty, as each surgery must be tailored to the individual. Sometimes, the scar tissue is addressed, and other times not.  We do what is right for the patient without something being set in stone. 

Raffy Karamanoukian, MD, FACS
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 94 reviews

If scar tissue is removed, more scar tissue can form

The term, "scar tissue" can mean different things when one is talking about rhinoplasty.  Commonly, it is used to describe the thickening of the soft tissue envelope after rhinoplasty.  In some cases, this can cover over the changes made to the cartilage and bone, preventing the surgical refinement from being visible to the outside world.  In my experience, when this happens, it is because the initial surgery was not planned or executed properly.  If this type of scar tissue develops, it can be difficult to remove it, as it can be quite adherent to the soft tissue envelope.  Attempting to remove it could lead to contour irregularities of the soft tissue (hard to fix) or regrowth of scar tissue.  A lot depends on the skin type of the patient.  In thin skin patients, some scar tissue is helpful to camouflage any irregularities under the skin surface.  In thick skin, scar tissue can create problems by shrouding the results.  An experienced surgeon will know best on how to deal with scar tissue in a revision.  See the link for a video I created explaining some of the differences between thin and thick skin in rhinoplasty.

David W. Kim, MD
Bay Area Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 37 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.