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An alarplasty is a type of nose plastic surgery that changes the shape of the nostrils. Many patients opt for alarplasty to reduce the size of the base of their nose. This reduces the appearance of flared nostrils and in some cases makes their nose look more symmetrical. The nose is a crucial piece in achieving overall facial balance, and an alarplasty can help to narrow the nostrils and create a greater sense of facial harmony. A skilled plastic surgeon can also maintain ethnic features that may be important to your identity while achieving a more balanced appearance.

Alarplasty and Ethnic Features

An alarplasty is a type of rhinoplasty, which is one of the most popular cosmetic procedures in the United States. Unfortunately, many beauty ideals are based on European and Western beauty standards, which means that many plastic surgeons are most familiar with goals that are in line with a European or Western look. However, there are different considerations needed for different ethnicities based on varying nasal structures and facial makeup. Some ethnicities are more likely to have flared and wider nostrils, and so an alarplasty is more common among them.

During an alarplasty procedure, a small amount of skin is removed from the edge  of the nostrils where they connect with the cheek, which makes the base of the nose appear narrower.  Most alarplasty procedures are performed along with a full rhinoplasty or tip narrowing, but they can also be performed as isolated procedures.  Depending on the goal of the procedure, there are different incision techniques. These techniques can even be combined with one another if the plastic surgeon believes it will produce the most desired result. Most individuals want to keep their own ethnic features and want subtle cosmetic changes and enhancements, and so it is important to choose an experienced plastic surgeon for an alarplasty.

Am I a Good Candidate for it?

You might be interested in an alarplasty if you feel as if your nose has a flared appearance or your nostrils are more prominent than desired. Your specific nose shape, health conditions, and previous cosmetic surgeries will factor into your candidacy for an alarplasty.

1. First, find a plastic surgeon who is experienced in this type of surgery. Alarplasties are more common among patients of certain ethnic backgrounds and so it is important that your surgeon understands that you want to maintain your ethnic features and go for subtler changes if this is your goal.

2. During the procedure itself, you will likely be put under general anesthesia. You may also be put under topical anesthesia depending on the procedure.

3. A small incision will be made and your surgeon will remove skin to shape the nose that you worked out during your consultation.

4. Sutures will reinforce the new shape of the base of the nose.

5. A full recovery takes up to three months.

If the shape of your nose is a hit to your self-esteem, talk to your doctor about the possibility of an alarplasty. It is more than possible to maintain certain ethnic nasal features with an alarplasty and other cosmetic surgeries while subtly correcting any issues.


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