nose job

What Is The Best Cartilage Material For A Nose Job?

The choice of material for a nose job (augmentation rhinoplasty) plays a critical role in determining the success of the nose job. If you are seeking a nose job to raise the bridge or increase the projection of the tip of your nose (also known as an augmentation rhinoplasty) then using your own body’s cartilage is typically the first option that your plastic surgeon will explore. This is because synthetic materials such as Gore-tex and Silicone both of which are “foreign objects” might not always be well received by your body; there is always a risk of rejection. Your body’s own cartilage, on the other hand, is not unfamiliar to your body and hence carries virtually no risk of rejection, irrespective of which part of your body this cartilage is sourced from.

There are 3 main regions in your body from where the plastic surgeon is going to consider harvesting cartilage to graft on to your nose. These are typically considered in the following order of preference:

1. Septal Cartilage (Nose):

This is usually the first choice for a nasal graft. The septum is the cartilaginous partition or wall that divides your left and right nasal passages. If there is enough septal cartilage available, the plastic surgeon will typically carve out a portion of this cartilage (without compromising the overall structural support), reshape it and then graft it on to the bridge or tip of your nose. Because this cartilage is already native to the nose, it is perfectly suited for nasal augmentation and carries limited risk of “resorption” or “reabsorbtion”. It is also less prone to “warping” or bending unlike cartilage taken from other parts of the body.


2. Conchal Cartilage (Ear):

When there is inadequate septal cartilage, the plastic surgeon will consider harvesting cartilage from the “conchal bowl” of either or both of your ears to obtain a cartilage graft. This is done in a manner that leaves no visible external scars on the ear and does not change the shape of the ear. Ear cartilage is popular because of its “pliability” – it is soft and can be easily reshaped. However, it has a tendency to “warp” or bend over time and, owing to its softness, cannot offer much structural support to the nasal bridge. Hence, ear cartilage is more suitable for nasal tip reshaping or augmentation as opposed to nasal bridge (dorsal) augmentation.


3. Costal Cartilage (Rib):

When neither septal nor conchal cartilage is available, the plastic surgeon will consider harvesting cartilage from between the ribs. There is abundant cartilage in this region and, hence, there is limited risk of impacting the function or shape of the rib cage. Costal cartilage is straighter and firmer than conchal cartilage and is therefore more suitable for grafting on to the nasal bridge as it does not bend over time and also helps provide structural support.

Hump nose correction before and after photo in korea

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