The operation is usually carried out under general anaesthetic.
An information leaflet is available which will provide you with the details you require regarding your anaesthetic (The Trust Information Leaflet ‘You and Your Anaesthetic’).
An operation called Reduction Rhinoplasty reduces the size of the nose. Think of the frame of the nose, as being like the roof of a house. In order to straighten the nose and bring the bridge closer to the face, cartilage is cut away. Then, to restore a new ''ridge'' or bridge-line, the two sides of the nose are bought together by cutting the bones of the nose where they join onto the cheekbones. This operation effectively narrows the width of the nose. If doing this makes the nostrils seem too wide, cutting out a small piece of skin can narrow them. It is also possible to shorten the nose and to slim down a bulky tip by reducing the amount of cartilage that shapes the end of the nose.
If you have some difficulty breathing through your nose, it may be possible to improve this at the same time. This is referred to as a Septoplasty. The proportions of the other features e.g. the chin and the cheekbones, influence sometimes the perception of the size of the nose. To create a balanced appearance it may be advisable to alter these features also, either at the same time as the rhinoplasty, or at a separate operation.
What are the limitations?
The object of the operation is to make your nose look right for you so that you become less self-conscious of it. It is therefore most important that you are clear in your mind what it is that you dislike about the appearance of your nose and that you are able to explain this to your surgeon.
The surgeon will then be able to tell you what is surgically possible and what is not. For instance, if the skin on the tip of your nose is thick and oily, it may not be possible to reduce its bulky appearance as much as you might like because, generally, it is not possible to thin the skin without leaving scars. If you are in middle age or if you have a very large nose, there may be a limit to the amount of reduction that can be achieved to the size of your nose. If your nose is bent from previous injury, it may not be possible to make it perfectly straight. Large nostrils can be difficult to reduce without cutting the skin and leaving noticeable scars.