Plastic surgery has come a long way in the past several decades, and along with it, an evolving understanding of how to achieve natural-looking results that will stand the test of time. One of the important advancements to come out of this evolution is cartilage support in rhinoplasty.
What Happens When Too Much Cartilage Is Removed
We’ve all seen botched nose jobs where the integrity of the nose has been destroyed—Michael Jackson being a notable and unfortunate example. The poor quality of work in his case came down in large part to a misunderstanding of facial structure. In the past, facial surgeons used to achieve a smaller nose by simply removing cartilage. It turns out, however, that facial structures are just like any other structures: they need support in order to function properly and stay in place.
For example, removing load-bearing walls in a home can cause it to cave in on itself. The same is true for the nose. Taking out the necessary supporting structure without making compensatory adjustments leads to the overdone, “collapsed” look that Jackson became known for.
How Grafts Protect the Nose and Produce Good Results
So how exactly do plastic surgeons create the necessary support in the nose while still creating the desired aesthetic changes? They use what’s known as cartilage support.
Cartilage support usually comes in the form of structural grafts, with the cartilage for the graft often being taken from the septum. The graft supports and strengthens the new structure of the nose and helps improve airflow through the nasal passages. Grafts are also used to shape and sculpt the tip of the nose to achieve the best possible aesthetic results.
What Kinds of Rhinoplasty Require Cartilage Support
Because of the various ways that structural grafts provide healing, support, and aesthetic value, most rhinoplasty procedures performed today include them. However, there are a limited number of cases where cartilage support is not needed.
Find Out More
To find out more about how Dr. Edween uses cartilage support to provide the best possible outcomes for rhinoplasty procedures, contact us today to schedule your consultation.