Health Questions and Answers

Why is rhinoplasty considered a challenging operation?

There are few surgical procedures in which the perception of success rests so substantially on the aesthetic judgment of the patient. In cosmetic rhinoplasty, tolerances of 1 mm may make the difference between a satisfactory and a disappointing outcome. Rhinoplasty, therefore, requires a collaborative exploration of what the patient would consider an appropriate result and how his or her expectations match surgical realities. The success or failure of rhinoplasty often depends on the willingness of the surgeon to invest the additional time needed to clarify the patient’s motivations and desires and to translate that understanding into an appropriate, jointly understood surgical plan.


  1. Farrior RT, Farrior EH: Special rhinoplasty techniques. In Cummings CW, et al (eds): Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery. St. Louis, Mosby, 1998, pp 857-886.
  2. Tardy ME Jr: Rhinoplasty: The Art and the Science. Philadelphia, W.B. Saunders, 1997.

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