Nostril asymmetry is common and is identified primarily looking from a worm’s eye view. This view is partially mimicked in looking down at your own image while you interact on visual platforms like FaceTime™.
Selfies have put an emphasis on changing the side profile of the nose and the chin, but FaceTime™ may be drawing attention to a feature that is not often discussed, nor are the options for correction commonly known.
- Common complaints are crooked nostrils, misshapen nostrils and nostrils that are too big and or too long.
What is the ideal shape and size of the nostril?
- The ideal shape and size may vary with gender and race.
- The ideal shape is oval and size should be balanced with the face and the nose.
- Two nostrils should take up 2/3 of the nasal base, with a gentle gull wing upper contour with a slight arch.
- The ideal nostril should not flare beyond the inner eye line and should be the appropriate width for the face.
- There should be no notching in the nostril.
What is the nostril made up of?
- Skin: externally and internally with nasal lining behind the border of hair growth
- Cartilage: lower lateral cartilage with central medial crural foot plates are enveloped with skin. Malposition of the lower lateral cartilage can cause nostril asymetry.
- Central medial crus does interact with the septum and asymmetry can be created through a deviated septum
What causes nostril imbalance?
- Congenital: the patient is born with unbalanced nostrils
- Scar: trauma (broken nose) or piercings can commonly lead to notching and tethering of the nostril skin.
- Septal deviation: can lead to nostril asymmetry
- Previous Rhinoplasty: the nostril support can be weakened with some common maneuvers in rhinoplasty (cartilage resection or a cephalic trim) that can lead to nostril narrowing and collapse.
Identification of nostril asymmetry is one component, but being able to correct a nostril shape issue can be challenging. Alteration of the nose, including the nostril is a common component of rhinoplasty (nose job). Dr. Trussler in Austin Texas has advanced training in cosmetic rhinoplasty and significant experience in secondary rhinoplasty.
Options for correction of nostril shape and size:
- Lift the outer inner edge of the nostril
- Add skin for a retracted and notched nostril
- Add support with cartilage grafts (lateral crural strut graft or lower lateral turn-over grafts)
- Narrow the nostril with cartilage resection and nasal tip sutures
- Decrease the size and flare of the nostril with alar base resections
- Correct septal deviation
- Grafts can be added to help support the nostril.
Recovery from a rhinoplasty or nose job can be about one week with the initial result seen at the one month period with the final result at the one year point. A consultation with Dr. Trussler in his Austin Texas plastic surgery office can help define what options there are to help refine the nose including the nostril shape.