Now seeing patients in Wayne and the surrounding Main Line area and Center City Philadelphia
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What is Functional Rhinoplasty?
Functional rhinoplasty is a type of nasal surgery intended to improve the breathing function of the nose. In septorhinoplasty, the septum is corrected in addition to the outer appearance of the nose. A patient with a septum issue such as a deviated septum or a septal perforation may be a candidate for a septorhinoplasty to improve the breathing function of the nose. Depending on the nature of a patient’s anatomic issues and nasal breathing problems, the functional rhinoplasty or septorhinoplasty portion of the surgery may be eligible to be covered by medical insurance. Cosmetic rhinoplasty, on the other hand, is usually designed to address the external appearance of the nose alone and is typically not covered. Dr. Ho possesses specialized training in both cosmetic rhinoplasty and functional rhinoplasty and will work with each patient to determine which type of nasal surgery is most ideal to address their surgical goals.
What is Dr. Ho’s Approach to Functional Rhinoplasty?
Dr. Ho attracts rhinoplasty candidates from all across Philadelphia and Newtown and other parts of Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York and will develop a customized surgical plan for each patient tailored to addressing their nasal anatomic issues. Depending on whether the patient desires cosmetic rhinoplasty at the same time as well, Dr. Ho will determine with each patient their individualized surgical plan that will improve both the internal structure and outer appearance of the nose. She is experienced in diagnosing and surgically correcting common nasal issues that contribute to nasal obstruction including septal deviation, nasal valve collapse, and drooping nasal tip. As a head and neck surgeon first, Dr. Ho understands the importance of form and function when it comes to the nose and creates beautiful, natural appearing noses that also breathe well for the long term.
What are common causes of nasal obstruction that can be treated with surgery?
Common nasal issues that can be improved or corrected with surgery include but are not limited to:
- Deviated septum
- Nasal valve collapse
- Nasal wall collapse
- Drooping nasal tip
- Underprojected nasal tip
- Enlarged turbinates
What type of patient is an ideal candidate for Functional Rhinoplasty?
The ideal candidate for functional rhinoplasty is a healthy non-smoker patient who has no remarkable medical or surgical history with persistent nasal breathing problems despite medical management and found on exam to demonstrate nasal anatomic issues that are contributing to their nasal obstruction. Patients who qualify for functional rhinoplasty have tried various medications including oral antihistamines, sinus rinses, and nasal steroid sprays without symptom improvement and usually do not have significant allergy or sinus issues. Dr. Ho is a board-certified head and neck surgeon and will thoroughly evaluate every rhinoplasty candidate to determine whether they may benefit from functional rhinoplasty.
What is a deviated septum?
The septum is a thin wall barrier comprised of cartilage and bone that divides the nose into two nasal passages. A deviated septum refers to when the septum is crooked or displaced to one side. This nasal finding may be an issue for some patients if it contributes to their nasal breathing problems. Usually the nasal passage where the septum deviates more towards feels more blocked. Depending on the patient’s nasal anatomy, extent of nasal obstruction, and surgical goals, a patient with nasal breathing concerns in the setting of a deviated septum may be a candidate for septoplasty (surgery that corrects the septum alone) or septorhinoplasty (surgery that improves the septum and other parts of the nose including the exterior). Septoplasty is commonly performed via a closed approach unless the location of the septal deviation is very anterior or high.
Dr. Ho is great and I am so happy to have a talented female plastic surgeon in Philly. She spent plenty of time with me, answering my questions and following up as much as I needed after my procedure. Highly recommend.
What is nasal valve collapse?
The nose possesses two kinds of nasal valves: the internal and external nasal valves. Nasal valve collapse associated with narrowing or weakness of either of these valves can cause nasal blockage and ultimately nasal obstruction.
The internal nasal valve is located within the nose and spans the area between the upper septum and the upper lateral cartilage in the middle third of the nose. In asymptomatic individuals, the ideal internal nasal valve angle is 10-15 degrees. Patients with internal nasal valve collapse may experience breathing improvement with Breathe Right ® nasal strips and demonstrate a narrower middle third or inverted V deformity of the nose. Dr. Ho usually performs septoplasty and creates spreader grafts for nasal valve repair of the internal nasal valve.
The external nasal valve is localized to the ala or nostril and is supported by the lower lateral cartilages. Patients with external valve collapse may possess weaker nostrils that fall inward with inspiration and show a positive Cottle test on examination. Dr. Ho utilizes a variety of cartilage grafting and suturing techniques for nasal valve repair of the external nasal valve including alar batten grafts, lateral crural strut grafts, lateral crural onlay grafts, and lateral crural repositioning.
Learn More During a Consultation
Dr. Thuy-Van Tina Ho will be available to discuss functional rhinoplasty and the variety of other procedures we perform during a consultation. Set up an appointment for your consultation – contact our office today.
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