Center for Plastic Surgery
1945 Old Gallows Road, Suite 400
Tysons Corner, VA 22182
Phone: (703) 560-2850
Monday - Friday: 8 a.m.–5 p.m.

Center for Plastic Surgery
5550 Friendship Blvd, Suite 130
Chevy Chase, MD 20815
Phone: (301) 652-7700
Monday - Friday: 8 a.m.–5 p.m.

Septoplasty vs. Rhinoplasty: 5 Differences To Know

Woman looking to the side with hands on face (model)

When a patient sees us for a rhinoplasty, or “nose job,” it’s often because they want to improve the appearance or functionality of their nose. Some patients may feel self-conscious about the size of their nose in relation to their other facial features. Other patients may have breathing problems. Depending on your concerns, we’ll recommend either septoplasty or rhinoplasty to you.

While each procedure is unique, they both have the potential to be life-changing! If you’re unsure whether you need septoplasty vs. rhinoplasty, here are 5 key indicators to help you distinguish between each nasal surgery procedure:

Rhinoplasty Case 377 Before & After Right Side | Chevy Chase & Annandale, Washington D.C. Metropolitan Area | Center for Plastic Surgery
Before & After Rhinoplasty
Rhinoplasty for Men Case 24 Before & After Left Side | Chevy Chase & Annandale, Washington D.C. Metropolitan Area | Center for Plastic Surgery
Before & After Rhinoplasty
Rhinoplasty Case 376 Before & After Left Side | Chevy Chase & Annandale, Washington D.C. Metropolitan Area | Center for Plastic Surgery
Before & After Rhinoplasty

#1. Septoplasty Addresses Nose Function

When patients wonder what is septoplasty compared to what is rhinoplasty, there’s an obvious answer. Also known as functional rhinoplasty, septoplasty is a medical procedure that addresses functional issues within the nose such as a deviated septum or turbinate reduction.

We perform septoplasty to help patients with chronic problems such as snoring, sleep apnea, and sinus issues breathe easier. During this relatively quick outpatient procedure, we adjust the septum (the cartilage and bone that divides the nostril) to clear the nasal passageway.

#2. Rhinoplasty Is a Cosmetic Procedure

Although there are different kinds of rhinoplasty, the non-medically necessary form of the procedure focuses on enhancing the aesthetic appearance of your nose. Cosmetic rhinoplasty can address concerns such as a dorsal hump or bulbous tip.

If you don’t have breathing problems and your primary concern is to reshape your nose, rhinoplasty is the way to go. During your procedure, we alter your nasal cartilage and bone so that your nose better complements your facial symmetry and overall appearance.

#3. Septoplasty Recovery Is Shorter Than Rhinoplasty Recovery

Most septoplasty patients only require about a week of downtime, and they may experience mild swelling, bruising, and nasal congestion for a few weeks. Rhinoplasty recovery typically takes up to 2 weeks for visible swelling and bruising to subside, but the entire healing process may take up to a year. Most rhinoplasty patients return to work after 2 weeks and can resume contact athletics after 6 weeks.

#4. Rhinoplasty Costs More Than Septoplasty

Patients comparing how much is a rhinoplasty compared to a septoplasty cost are usually correct in assuming that rhinoplasty surgery is more expensive. At our practice, all rhinoplasty fees start at $10,000, and the price varies based on our surgical approach and your specific needs.

It’s important to note that septoplasty surgery is typically covered by insurance because it’s considered a medical vs. cosmetic surgery. You can learn more about financing options for your nose job procedure here.

#5. Some Patients Benefit By Combining Each Procedure

Sometimes, we recommend combining septoplasty and rhinoplasty to address functional and cosmetic concerns. This win-win approach improves facial harmony while helping you breathe more easily. Another bonus: your insurance may cover some of the costs.

Are you ready to explore which nasal surgery is right for you? Whether you’re seeking functional improvement or cosmetic enhancement, consulting with a board-certified plastic surgeon is essential. Remember, we’re here to help you navigate the process! We encourage you to request a consultation online or call us at (703) 560-2850 to get started.

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