Is It Worth Getting Surgery for a Minimally Droopy Columella?

Is it worth getting surgery for a drooping/hanging columella to shorten the nose by only 2-3 mm? I don't know if this is worth the time, money, and effort.

Doctor Answers 11

Is It Worth Getting Surgery for a Minimally Droopy Columella?

Is It Worth Getting Surgery for a Minimally Droopy Columella?  That depends on how bad it is, how much it bothers you and how easy it is to fix....IMHO.

Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

It's worth changing the shape of the columella

Whether it is worth it or not, depends on how much it bothers you, how much you are willing to pay and how reliable it is to get a good result.  I can't answer the first two questions.  You'll have to determine if you really want it changed and you'll have to decide how much you'd be willing to pay to have it done.  However, I can tell you that of all rhinoplasty techniques and desired changes, changing the drooping or hanging columella is one of the more straightforward and relatively easy maneuvers.  So, the result is typically reliable.  Good luck!  Best, - Dr. Phil

Philip J. Miller, MD, FACS
New York Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 80 reviews

Correction of hanging colummella works well.


The procedure is safe and effective.  There are no scars, minimal bruising, and quick recovery.  So it is worth it,  if the way you look now really bothers you.

George J. Beraka, MD (retired)
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Treatment for a hanging columella can be simple or complex

First, for readers who don't know what the columella is, it is the portion of the nose between the nostrils. A hanging columella is when it sticks out too far.

Treatment for a large or "hanging" columella depends on the cause. The first cause is a long nasal septum, which is treated by shortening the septum. Next is when the central part of the nasal tip cartilage called the medial crura are too curved; treated by trimming or suspending these cartilages upward. Third, a hanging columella may not be a columella problem at all but highly arched nostrils. To treat these, the nostrils need to be lowered using grafts of cartilage.

For just this condition alone, surgery can be done under local anesthesia.

Steven J. Pearlman, MD
New York Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 125 reviews

A hanging columella is not pretty

A hanging columella produces "excessive columella show", which can make the nostrils appear much larger than they need to be, and by direct relationship, making the entire nose seem too large. Just a few milimeters change can make dramatic esthetic improvements in nasal appearence, and if the tip projection, shape, and rotation are normal, it does not take risky, complex surgery to lift or shorten the columella, and provide immediate enhancement of the nasal appearence. So, even without seeing a picture, most rhinoplastic surgeons, including yours truly, would feel the effort was worthwhile. A computer imaging session at your doctor's office should also convince you.  Good luck, and don't be afraid to discuss your concerns to your doctor.

Maurice P. Sherman, MD
San Diego Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 27 reviews

Refinement rhinoplasty for drooping columella.

A droopy columella is also known as excessive columellar show or a hanging columella.  This typically results in the nostril opening appearing to open, particularly when viewed from the side.  Correcting excessive columellar show will indeed make a significant difference in overall nasal aesthetics.  If this is the only issue to be addressed then it can be corrected fairly easily as an office procedure with the patient awake and sedated with oral sedatives.  The cost and down time would be substantially less than a comprehensive rhinoplasty.  The results can be reasonably well demonstrated using one of the imaging software programs and I would encourage you to seek out a surgeon who can show you the possible changes.  

Good Luck,

Mario Imola, MD, DDS.


Mario J. Imola, MD, DDS
Denver Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 116 reviews

Worth it to fix hanging columella

Whether it's worth repairing a hangin columellar is up to you, but it certainly isn't an unreasonable thing to want to improve if it bothers you.

The actual technique to do the repair depends on the cause. An examination would help determine your options.

Thomas A. Lamperti, MD
Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 21 reviews

Hanging columella

A hanging columella can be improved often by treating the caudal septum and lifting the columellla. If it bothers you, the it is worth fixing.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Droopy columella

If this is a feature that bothers you then getting it fixed permanently is definitely worth it. Go for a consult and see what kind of difference it makes on computer imaging photos. If you likeit, then do it. It can dramatically change your frontal and lateral appearance.

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

Rhinoplasty, is it worth it?

Rhinoplasty can raise the columella and reduce nasal length and nostril show, but is the effort worth it. In rhinoplasty even 2 to 3 mm is a large amount. The best way to help you decide if the surgery is worth it may be computer simulation to 'try out' the result on your nose. If you think the simulation is worth it, then the surgery should be as well.

Best of luck,


Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 42 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.