Rhinophyma Surgery

Rhinophyma Surgery in Pasadena, CA

Rhinophyma is a skin disorder that enlarges the nose and becomes red, bumpy, and bulbous. However, it’s not true that it results from untreated rosacea, a chronic inflammatory condition that causes facial skin redness on the cheeks and nose. It’s also a myth that heavy alcohol consumption causes rhinophyma.

Rhinophyma occurs equally in those who abstain from alcohol and heavy drinkers. If left untreated, rhinophyma can lead to permanent disfigurement, including a large bulbous nasal tip that can also lead to nasal obstruction.

Our highly skilled team at the Comprehensive Dermatology Center of Pasadena has accumulated years of training in dermatology and cosmetic surgery to improve the diagnosis and treatment of skin conditions, including rhinophyma. We offer advanced medical practices to effectively treat skin ailments and enhance our patients’ quality of life.

If you are struggling with rhinophyma and need help restoring nose contour and nose skin tone, contact the Comprehensive Dermatology Center of Pasadena and schedule a consultation today.

Causes of Rhinophyma

The causes of rhinophyma are unknown, but certain factors increase the risk of this rare condition, including:

  • Rhinophyma is typically diagnosed between the age of fifty and seventy
  • Men are at a higher risk of contracting the disorder than women.
  • Fair-skinned individuals are at higher risk of developing rhinophyma.
  • People of Scandinavian, Scottish, Irish, English, or Eastern European descent are at a higher risk.
  • Individuals with family members who have struggled with rosacea or rhinophyma are at a higher risk.

Rhinophyma Symptoms

Rhinophyma typically develops in severe rosacea cases. Its symptoms may occur in cycles and worsen if untreated. Nasal symptoms include:

  • Gradual swelling that results in a bulbous-shaped tip
  • Visible oil glands
  • Enlarged skin pores
  • Reddish skin tone
  • Skin thickens
  • Yellowish, rough, waxy skin surface

Diagnosing Rhinophyma

Our experienced dermatology team conducts a thorough evaluation, including a physical exam and a review of personal and family medical history.

Typically, we can diagnose rhinophyma with this information without additional testing. However, we may perform a skin biopsy to confirm the diagnosis, especially in patients whose condition does not improve after treatment.

Rhinophyma Treatment

For severe rhinophyma,  surgery may be necessary to remove thick skin and recontour the nose. Unlike rhinoplasty (a nose job), rhinophyma surgery does not alter the nose’s fundamental structure. Still, it restores the natural shape by eliminating excess skin that causes a more prominent, reddish, and lumpy appearance.

Surgery is frequently needed to treat rhinophyma. It helps:

  • Reshape disfigured nose
  • Minimize enlarged blood vessels
  • Remove tissue overgrowth
  • Improve breathing

Our surgeons treat rhinophyma with the following:

  • Dermabrasion to remove the surface skin layer
  • Laser resurfacing to recontour the nose

In more severe cases, treatment consists of shaving the bulk of the tissue with a sharp instrument or surgical cautery and allowing the area to heal with monitored dressing changes. In rare cases, the patient may need skin grafting. Septorhinoplasty (nasal reconstruction for function) may be part of the treatment in large nasal tip rhinophymas. Six months after a septorhinoplasty, patients often consider laser resurfacing.

Rhinophyma Surgery Recovery

The recovery from rhinophyma surgery typically takes three months or possibly longer. Some patients may need more than one treatment and that extends the healing period. Upon your surgery, your surgeon will require you to take certain medications to prevent infection and manage discomfort.

We ask you to prepare for a ten-day home recovery. You will experience some oozing and crusting for the first couple of days. Apply no topical ointments, serums, or creams unless instructed otherwise. All areas must be kept bandaged and moist.

After these first ten days, the treated area will feel dry and taut. We will prescribe a moisturizer. Vaseline, mupirocin, or Aquaphor are not necessary at this time. Itching is to be expected and typically responds well to prescription ointments if you request. The recurring redness will fade gradually within a few weeks or months.

Optimal results are generally realized three months after surgery.

Why Choose the Comprehensive Dermatology Center of Pasadena?

Our practice is comprised of highly skilled and trained dermatologists and surgeons dedicated to providing optimal medical-grade skin care to our patients at our state-of-the-art facility in Pasadena. To learn more about Rhinophyma and Rhinophyma Surgery, schedule a consultation today.

Rhinophyma Surgery FAQs

Q. What areas of the face does rhinophyma affect?

This condition is isolated to the skin changes on the nose, but rosacea can affect the central forehead, chin, and cheeks. A flushed appearance and uneven skin tone and texture usually manifest these changes.

Q. Will rhinophyma reoccur once treated?

Rhinophyma rarely occurs once it has been treated with surgery or laser excision. However, if the patient chooses to use a less aggressive treatment strategy, more than one treatment may be needed.

Q. Will my health insurance cover rhinophyma treatment?

Although most rhinophyma surgeries are considered cosmetic, if obstruction to nasal passages causes breathing difficulties, your insurance may cover the procedure. So it’s best to give them a call.


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