Should I Get a Rhinoplasty or is my Skin too Thick? Will It Affect my Breathing?

I am a 26 year old male I am Indian (from India) and I understand I have thick skin around my tip. How much will this affect my result on the tip of my nose, Will I be able to see a visible difference? I also have a deviated septum and will need a Septoplasty and my Turbinites need to be reduced. Will this affect my breathing positively or negatively? I'd like a second opinion PLEASE HELP!!

Doctor Answers 10

Surgery of the nasal tip with thick skin

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You have brought up a great topic for discussion.  Thick skin is an important factor to overcome for successful rhinoplasty. This can't be assesed by photographs. There are advanced techniques an experienced rhinoplasty surgeon may need to use in patients with very thick skin in order to achieve significant improvement in tip contour. You may need to have your nostrils reduced in size as well.  Thick skin does not affect the septum nor turbinates which will improve your breathintg.  Your nose is overprojected out of your face and the receding chin makes it more noticable, which could be remedied with a chin implant.  I would also recommend that you consider cheek implants to balance out your face and nose.

Bakersfield Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

Should I Get a Rhinoplasty or is my Skin too Thick? Will It Affect my Breathing?

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Your skin doesn't appear to be that much thicker than average, so I se no reason that a Rhinoplasty couldn't thin and reduce he size and shape of your nose.  The nasal bones are crooked (from nasal trauma), there is a dorsal hump and a wide nasal tip.  The chin is weak, on profile, so a chin implant should be considered to balance out the lower face.  The Septoplasty and turbinate reduction should increase the nasal airway and improve the breathing.

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

Here is the truth about thick skin rhinoplasty...

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First of all you cannot get a second opinion online.  You need to be seen and examined.

However, your skin does not appear to be extremely thick.  Even if it is very thick, very nice results can be achieved with proper rhinoplasty technique.  Thick skin rhinoplasty uses more structural grafts and less excisional technique.  But you need to see a specialist who does tons of good rhinoplasty because its always easiest to get a good result in a primary rhinoplasty.

Correction of a deviated septum and reduction of turbinates should make your breathing better and not worse but again it all depends on how well the surgery is done.  A bad septo-rhinoplasty will certainly make things worse but a good one should improve your looks and breathing.

Good luck

Shervin Naderi, MD, FACS
Washington DC Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 119 reviews

Thick skin

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Thick skin is always a challenge but, from your pictures, I think you should do well. Male tips should not be overe done. As to the breathing, it should be better

David A. Bray, Sr., MD
Los Angeles Facial Plastic Surgeon

Skin thickness when considering rhinoplasty

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I tend to agree with one of the other posters in that your skin actually seems more on the average (or maybe even thin) side.  I can clearly see the outline of your cartilages in your tip.  You have a classic "tension nose" that could use some de-projection, straightening, and elevation of the starting point of the nose ( the radix).  You would definitely see a difference after rhinoplasty.  Your breathing can be improved (and should be addressed) during the surgery.  Good luck.  I'd be happy to see you in Richmond for a face-to-face second opinion.  I like to use computer imaging to show patients what I believe I can achieve with surgery.  This would be good for you to see prior to having surgery. 

Matthew Bridges, MD
Richmond Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 26 reviews

Indian skin and rhinoplasty

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Thicker skin in many patients of different ethnicities really only effects the visual refinement of the tip. Usually the nose swelling dissipates from the dorsum to the tip. In thick skinned patients it may take longer to see your overall results usually up to a year. In reviewing your photographs you are a great candidate for surgery and would see a tremendous result when done properly. If you have breathing issues then you must address the septum and turbinates at the time of the procedure in order to maintain proper breathing functions. I typically address these issues in most of my rhinoplasty surgeries to ensure function as well as good aesthetics. Your breathing should be affected in a positive manner post surgery. It is important in doing male rhinoplasty that you keep a masculine nose that is in harmony with the rest of your facial structure. You want your final result to look like a nose you were born with not one achieved through surgery. I use a digital imaging computer in the consulting phase which allows the patient to see the proposed surgical results prior to their surgery. This would be a good option for you while consulting surgeons and enable you to get a good idea of your post surgical result. Best regards!

Michael Elam, MD
Orange County Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 218 reviews

Indian skin and rhinoplasty

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Thick skin at the nasal tip can obscure the fine detail of the underlying structure at the tip. However, based on your photos, you will definitely notice a difference in your tip. From an aesthetic standpoint, you would benefit from straightening the nose, slightly augmenting the radix, refining the dorsum and tip, and also a chin implant. (A small chin is part of the reason your nose looks out of proportion to your face.) From a functional standpoint, the deviated septum and turbinate hypertrophy can both contribute to difficulty breathing, and can be addressed within the same surgery. The goal of a septo-rhinoplasty surgery is to improve both form and function at the same time. The removed portion of the septum can be used for grafts as needed, such as possible spreader grafts. I would recommend consulting with one or more Board certified Plastic Surgeons or ENT surgeons with experience in rhinoplasty and ethnic rhinoplasty. Once you find someone you feel comfortable with, make sure to communicate both your breathing issues and what you dislike about the appearance. Each surgeon has a different idea of the ideal nose, so you want to make sure you are on the same page. Good luck!

Anita Patel, MD, FACS
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

Is Skin too Thick for Rhinoplasty

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In a word - no. Thicker skin definitely can make a difference in some patients, in that changes made to the tip may not show through as well. However it will not affect the Septoplasty, Turbinate Surgery or correction of the external nasal deviation. I can see the outline of the tip cartilages in your photos so I am inclined to believe your skin, although perhaps thick, will not pose a significant problem. However if your surgeon has concerns perhaps he sees something not apparent in the photos. In my opinion you should see at least one additional surgeon and make sure he has interest and experience in Rhinoplasty. Best of Luck   Dr Harrell

Thick skin and rhinoplasty

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A septoplasty and turbinate surgery is done to improve airflow dynamics through the nose and is done out of medical necessity for breathing.  In the pictures presented it appears that the patient’s mouth is open in both preoperative pictures, which is consistent with significant nasal obstruction.  Rhinoplasty can also be performed at the same time.  Rhinoplasty procedure will involve reducing of dorsal hump, refining the tip, removing any hump and break to the nose, and realigning the nasal bones.  Careful and close follow up with the rhinoplasty surgeon with cortisone shots in the tip of the nose will help prevent a pollybeak deformity.  Understand that the patient must pay for the rhinoplasty component of the surgery while the septoplasty is billed to the insurance.  

William Portuese, MD
Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 158 reviews

Adjusting for thick skin in rhinoplasty

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Thicker skin is not infrequent in rhinoplasty, and to adjust, often supporting grafts are required to change the shape of the nose. Even with thicker skin, the results can be very nice. Most individuals do not even know what the turbinates are, much less that they need be reduced. If your surgeon knows his stuff the airway should not be problem either.

Best of luck,


Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 44 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.