Dr. John Hilinski San Diego Plastic Surgeon Interview On Ethnic Rhinoplasty

We are going to be joined by Dr. John Hilinski, a Board Certified Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeon. Today Dr. Hilinski will be here to discuss the importance of ethnic rhinoplasty and progress in that field of plastic surgery.

ALEX: Dr. Hilinski, some people think that patients who opt for rhinoplasty simply want a better looking nose. Can you dispel that notion for us and perhaps share a few considerations that people may have when seeking rhinoplasty? facial plastic surgeon in Cincinnati, OH

DR. HILINSKI: I would say that in a good majority of cases, rhinoplasty patients are not seeking to have a nose created that is better looking. The real impetus behind their desire to have cosmetic nose reshaping is to simply get rid of certain features of their nose that bother them. For example, patients with a large hump or bulbous nasal tip are not necessarily seeking a more beautiful nose. They are really looking to just reduce the hump (or bump deformity) or make the tip less rounded so that these features are not as obvious.

The real goal of rhinoplasty is to reshape the nose in such a way that people look beyond it without getting hung up on a particularly distracting feature, and are simply looking at one’s eyes.

In other cases, rhinoplasty patients are seeking to restore their nose to a state that once previously existed. For instance, (often times) noses are broken as a result of a traumatic injury or accident. The nose was displaced or shifted to one side or the other. In many cases, this is accompanied by trouble breathing through the nose as well. So these patients are seeking to correct the traumatic injury by reshaping the nose to restore their prior look. If there is trouble breathing through the nose, this dysfunction can likely be corrected at the same time.

ALEX: Dr. Hilinski, you recently gave a lecture on ethnic rhinoplasty at the UCSD Medical Center in San Diego, California. Are there problems or issues with current rhinoplasty standards for patients of different ethnicities?

DR. HILINSKI: Yes, that was part of the message I was trying to spread regarding ethnic rhinoplasty. Unfortunately, there are still a good number of plastic surgeons who are trying to reshape ethnic rhinoplasty noses in an overly aggressive manner. This results in noses that are far from ethnically appropriate for those faces. These patients end up with noses that look to ‘westernized’ or appear more Caucasian than ethnic. The end result is a nose that has all the stigma of having been surgically altered.

This is not the look ethnic patients are seeking. Rather, they are looking to achieve a result that appears ethnically consistent with their surrounding facial features – a nose that looks like they could have been born with it. I am trying to convey to other plastic surgeons the need to avoid this if at all possible.

ALEX: Doctor, will you share with us a few of the highlights from your lecture?

DR. HILINSKI: Sure. One thing that I really emphasized to the audience of community plastic surgeons was how different the skin is when dealing with ethnic rhinoplasty patients. Why does this matter? Because thicker ethnic skin behaves entirely different than thinner Caucasian skin. For example, if one is trying to create more tip definition in an ethnic nose that is quite rounded in appearance, you cannot rely on standard surgical technique that you would use in a Caucasian nose. You need to make more definitive changes to the skeletal and cartilage framework in the ethnic nose to achieve the desired type of cosmetic change. This is really important when performing ethnic rhinoplasty surgery.