More and more African American patients are seeking nasal refinements to their nose to improve several features. In the past, changes to African American noses was deemed difficult since traditional reductive rhinoplasty techniques were ineffective. However, with advances in rhinoplasty, African Americans can now see greater changes which appear natural than ever before. African American rhinoplasty is now one of the most popular procedures amongst African American plastic surgery patients. Dr. Shah specializes in ethnic rhinoplasty and has been featured in both the Chicago Loop News as well as interviewed by Santitia Jackson on WVON AM 1690 on Dr. Shah’s revolutionary way of patients to classify surgery by their ethnicity called EFACE.
So what makes Dr. Shah so different for African American Rhinoplasty?
- Experience in Ethnic Rhinoplasty
Dr. Shah has worked on ethnic rhinoplasty and rhinoplasty for African American for over 10 years and has performed more than 3000 rhinoplasty procedures. Working with so many patients gives him a unique advantage in performing rhinoplasty and revision rhinoplasty.
- High Aesthetic Standards
Dr. Shah has patients from all industries including modeling, TV, pageants, etc. Patients chose Dr. Shah in part because he is able to work with patients to create a unique and beautiful nose for their face. Patients trust Dr. Shah because he is able to work with many different types of patients and tailor a procedure.
- Support to the Nose
Every nose is different and many African American noses need support. Surgeons who are not able to support the nose will not be able to define the nasal tip. While some surgeons will use artificial implants, Dr. Shah does not take this sometimes dangerous short cut. Dr. Shah only uses natural cartilage in the nose and does not use artificial implants. The reason he prefers your body’s natural cartilage is it makes the nose look more natural and that there is no possibility of injection and much lower chance of infection. Dr. Shah uses cartilage from the inside of the nose (called the septum) but in some cases will use cartilage from either the ear or rib if more cartilage is needed. Very few surgeons are able to use rib cartilage and Dr. Shah has been a pioneer in rib cartilage harvesting having been an author on 2 sentinel studies.
- Soft tissue reduction or Alar base reduction
Some African American patients will have prominent alar bases and excess skin to the nose. For these patients, Dr. Shah utilizes several techniques for alar base reduction and removing skin. He helps conceal the scars by either internal techniques or hiding the incisions along natural borders. Dr. Shah has written articles on alar base reduction in the scientific literature.
What makes an African American nose different than another ethnicity?
African American noses have a wide range of shapes and sizes. Some geneticists have shown more genetic diversity in some African villages than in entire countries. Ethiopian noses look different than Nigerian noses and every patient will have different ideas of what they want. African American noses have an increased amount of diversity since many patients will have further genetic differences. Many patients will require support to the nose and surgeons need to understand advanced rhinoplasty techniques in order to provide consistent results. In addition, surgeons need to understand the each patient’s unique perspective and tailor a nose for him or her.
Do African American patients have breathing issues commonly?
African American patients typically have breathing issues related to either the septum or the turbinate size. The turbinates are located along the inside of the nose and swell and deswell when inflamed and this can occur as a result of allergies. The septum is made of cartilage and bone and when deviated can cause obstruction of the nose.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Does Dr. Shah have experience with African American noses?
Yes, Dr. Shah works with patients of African American background not just in nose surgery but in all aspects of the face.
Where is Dr. Shah located?
Dr. Shah’s office is located in Chicago in the Water Tower Building.
Do I have to have anesthesia for a rhinoplasty?
Some types of rhinoplasty can be performed in the office. For patients solely wanting an alar base reduction, procedures can be performed in the office.
Will my nose be packed after surgery?
Typically, the nose is not packed after surgery but every patient is different.
Can I raise my bridge for surgery?
Yes, patients can raise their bridge using cartilage. Cartilage can come from the ear or rib or the inside of the nose and the location of cartilage harvested will determine which location is best for you.
What does Dr. Shah do to minimize scars?
Scars can be minimized by paying close attention to meticulous suture closure. In addition, post procedure laser can help decrease the appearance of the scars.
Can I go home the same day after African American rhinoplasty?
Yes, patients typically go home after a procedure as it is considered outpatient.
Does noninvasive rhinoplasty work for African American patients?
For some patients who only want bridge elevation, noninvasive rhinoplasty can be an option. Dr. Shah does not like permanent fillers but longer lasting fillers such as Juvederm Voluma can be used.
How do you get a smaller tip with African American rhinoplasty?
There are several important steps to getting a smaller tip in African American rhinoplasty. First of all, supporting the nasal tip and adding firmness to the tip is important. In addition, many patients, especially those with flatter noses, benefit from nasal tip projection. Finally, reduction of soft tissues of the nose can help improve nasal tip definition.
How soon afterwards will I see a difference?
Since many patients have thicker skin who are black, it may take up to a year to see a final result.
Is there anything that needs to be done post procedure with African American rhinoplasty patients?
Many patients are advised to tape their noses at night. In addition, patients will often benefit from injections of steroid or other substances to reduce swelling.