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Open or Closed Rhinoplasty: What You Need to Know

Navigating the world of rhinoplasty can be confusing, especially when it comes to choosing between open or closed rhinoplasty. This detailed guide will help you understand the differences, pros and cons, and what to expect from both procedures, assisting you in making an informed decision.

What is an Open Rhinoplasty?

Open rhinoplasty is a surgical procedure where the surgeon makes an incision on the columella, the soft tissue separating the nostrils, in addition to internal nasal incisions. This technique provides the surgeon with direct visibility and easier access to the nasal structures, allowing more comprehensive modifications if needed.

What is a Closed Rhinoplasty?

Closed rhinoplasty, also known as endonasal rhinoplasty, involves incisions made solely within the nostrils, keeping them hidden from view. While the closed approach may limit the direct view of the nasal structures, it’s favored for its less invasive nature and absence of external scarring.

Choosing the Right Type of Rhinoplasty

Choosing between open and closed rhinoplasty depends on multiple factors including the complexity of the case, the specific changes you want to make, your surgeon’s expertise, and your personal preference. While the open technique might be more suitable for complex cases requiring extensive reshaping, the closed technique might be a better choice for simpler modifications with a priority on minimal scarring.

How Much Does a Closed Rhinoplasty Cost?

The cost of a closed rhinoplasty varies depending on the surgeon’s experience, geographic location, and the complexity of the procedure. It’s important to understand that rhinoplasty is a significant investment and should be performed by an experienced, board-certified plastic surgeon to ensure optimal results.

How Does a Closed Rhinoplasty Work?

In a closed rhinoplasty, the surgeon works through the nostril, shaping the cartilage and bone to achieve the desired result. Since there are no external incisions, the technique involves meticulous skill to sculpt the nose without direct visibility, requiring a surgeon with extensive experience and expertise.

Procedure for a Closed Rhinoplasty

The procedure for a closed rhinoplasty involves administering anesthesia followed by the surgeon making precise internal incisions within the nostrils. Through these incisions, the surgeon delicately modifies the bone and cartilage to enhance the nose’s shape and function.

Differences Between Open vs Closed Rhinoplasty

The primary differences between open and closed rhinoplasty lie in the technique and surgical access. While open rhinoplasty provides direct visibility and a larger operating field, closed rhinoplasty offers a quicker recovery with no visible scarring. The choice often depends on the specific patient case and the surgeon’s preference.

Targeted Areas for Treatment

Both open and closed rhinoplasty can address common nasal concerns such as a bulbous tip, hump on the bridge, wide nostrils, or issues with symmetry. The surgeon’s skill is paramount in achieving successful outcomes regardless of the technique used.

Are There Any Risks or Side Effects?

Rhinoplasty, like any surgical procedure, carries risks such as infection, bleeding, anesthesia complications, or dissatisfaction with cosmetic results. However, these risks can be minimized by selecting a skilled and experienced plastic surgeon.

What to Expect After a Closed Rhinoplasty?

Recovery from a closed rhinoplasty is typically quicker compared to the open method due to the absence of an external incision. Most patients experience swelling and bruising which gradually subside within a couple of weeks.

Preparing for a Closed Rhinoplasty

Preparation for a closed rhinoplasty involves a detailed consultation with your surgeon, understanding the procedure, setting realistic expectations, and following pre-operative instructions such as refraining from certain medications and smoking.

Navigating the world of rhinoplasty may seem daunting, but with the right knowledge and guidance, you can make an informed decision that best suits your aesthetic goals and lifestyle. Always consult with an experienced, board-certified plastic surgeon to discuss your options and expectations.


Does closed rhinoplasty heal faster?

Yes, closed rhinoplasty generally has a quicker recovery time compared to open rhinoplasty. This is due to the absence of an external incision, which results in less postoperative swelling and quicker healing.

How does closed rhinoplasty work?

In a closed rhinoplasty, all incisions are made within the nostrils, eliminating any visible external scars. The surgeon then reshapes the bone and cartilage of the nose through these internal incisions, requiring a high degree of skill and experience due to the limited visibility.

What is better: open or closed rhinoplasty?

The choice between open and closed rhinoplasty depends on the individual’s specific needs and the surgeon’s expertise. Open rhinoplasty might be preferred for more complex cases due to better visibility and access, whereas closed rhinoplasty could be chosen for simpler cases, or when minimizing visible scarring is a priority.

Is closed rhinoplasty permanent?

The results of a closed rhinoplasty are designed to be permanent. However, changes in the body over time, such as those associated with aging, can subtly influence the nose’s appearance.

Is there less swelling with closed rhinoplasty?

Yes, typically there is less swelling with closed rhinoplasty compared to open rhinoplasty, as there’s no external incision involved. However, individual experiences can vary.

What is the success rate of closed rhinoplasty?

The success rate of closed rhinoplasty is high when performed by a skilled and experienced surgeon. However, the exact rate can vary depending on the surgeon’s skill and the specifics of the patient’s case.

Who is a good candidate for closed rhinoplasty?

A good candidate for closed rhinoplasty is someone who requires minor to moderate changes to the nasal structures, has a stable health status, and has realistic expectations about the outcome of the procedure. Your surgeon will make the final determination based on a comprehensive evaluation.

How painful is closed rhinoplasty?

Pain following a closed rhinoplasty is typically mild to moderate and can be managed effectively with prescribed pain medication. Most patients report more discomfort from nasal congestion rather than pain from the surgery itself. Remember, everyone’s pain tolerance varies, and your surgeon will guide you on managing discomfort post-surgery

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Prof. Dr. Mehmet Veli Karaaltin

Prof. Dr. Karaaltin acquired his medical degree in Medicine from Istanbul University, in the English-learner Branch, and ranked 12 out of 25.000 medical doctors, in the National Turkish Examination.

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