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Is Sinus Surgery Considered Cosmetic Surgery?

There are many reasons for nasal surgery, from medical to cosmetic. Whether it’s to correct anatomical abnormalities that are interfering with breathing, change the aesthetical shape, or even reconstruct the bones and cartilage following an injury, nose surgery can have a major impact on the way you look and feel. Is sinus surgery considered cosmetic surgery?

There are several types of nasal surgery, so understanding the desired outcomes for each will help you identify which type of surgery is which.

Septoplasty: This nasal surgery is performed to correct a deviated septum. The wall that divides the two sides of your nose is the septum, and is made of thin bone and cartilage. While many people have one side that is slightly crooked or bigger than the other, a large difference may interfere with breathing on one side of the nose. Septoplasty straightens the septum to make the two sides of the nose more symmetrical, allowing the work of breathing to be shared by both sides.

Turbinate Reduction: The turbinates are the small, bony structures inside the nose. They can swell due to allergies, colds or even misuse of nasal medications. Turbinate swelling makes it difficult for air to pass through the nose. Turbinate reduction surgery reduces the swelling and prevents future episodes.

Rhinoplasty: Commonly referred to as a nose job, rhinoplasty is a cosmetic procedure to change the appearance of the nostrils, nose tip or bridge of the nose. Rhinoplasty does not have any medical necessity, and is done purely for aesthetic purposes. Rhinoplasty can be performed through an external incision or internally, depending on the cosmetic goals.

Sinus Surgery: There are several types of sinus surgery performed, each with varying techniques and levels of invasiveness. But all have the same goal in mind: remove obstructions in the sinus and nasal cavities to improve airflow. Sinus surgery is performed to drain blocked fluid in the sinuses, remove obstructions and return sinus function to normal.

The short answer is that no, sinus surgery is not considered cosmetic surgery. Sinus surgery is done for medical purposes (and almost always as a last resort when all other treatment avenues have been explored), while rhinoplasty is purely cosmetic. However, sinus surgery and rhinoplasty can be combined into one surgical appointment under the approval and guidance of a nasal and plastic surgeon. Although this extends the surgery time, the benefit is that there will be only one recovery period.

If you are suffering from recurrent sinus infections, nasal polyps, allergies, a deviated septum, nosebleeds or just want more information about cosmetic rhinoplasty, call (602) 956-1250 to schedule an appointment at Biltmore ENT. Our ear, nose and throat specialists are the top ENT doctors in the Phoenix area and can provide you with guidance and treatment for all your nasal problems.


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