Graft or No Graft: What’s the Difference and What’s Right for Me?

Cartilage grafts are just one of many tools that we have to perfect the shape of the nose during rhinoplasty. For some patients these grafts can help us to achieve better results, but they aren’t the right option for everyone. If you could benefit from a graft, we’ll discuss this option with you in detail during your consultation. Until then, here’s some basic information about grafts. Call and schedule your rhinoplasty consultation at MAE Plastic Surgery today!

What Is a Cartilage Graft?

A cartilage graft uses cartilage from another area of the body to build structure and add tissue to the nose. We often use cartilage harvested from the septum, rib, or ear. Since cartilage grafts use your own tissue, they are very safe and there is no risk of rejection for the transferred tissue. In many cases we can also use tissue harvested from the nose during the rhinoplasty for the graft.

Cartilage grafts help to build the structure of the nose. They can be useful for providing support to the tip, to widen the nasal passages, to elongate the nose, and to alleviate breathing issues. They have many potential benefits and when used by a skilled surgeon are a very safe and effective rhinoplasty option. Cartilage grafts are often used in ethnic rhinoplasty.

Grafts vs. Implants- Which Option Is Best?

Grafts aren’t the only option for adding to the nose. We can also use silicone implants, placed into the nose, to augment and enhance the nasal shape. Implants aren’t as versatile as cartilage grafting. We are limited to specific shapes and sizes of implants. Grafting also provides a more natural looking and long lasting result. Much of the time, grafting is a better option, but some patients may benefit from an implant. We’ll discuss your options and make recommendations during your consultation.

Do I Really Need a Graft?

Grafts aren’t right for every patient, but there are times when they are needed. For the right patients a graft can dramatically improve both the aesthetic and functional outcome of the rhinoplasty. If Dr. Epstein recommends a graft, you probably need one. Talk with him about any concerns you may have. Grafts do add some complexity to your rhinoplasty, but once you’ve healed, the results are typically very good.

Recovery After a Cartilage Graft

Cartilage grafts require that cartilage is extracted from another area on the body. The septum typically provides the best cartilage for rhinoplasty, but if there isn’t enough in this location we may harvest cartilage from other sources too. After a graft you’ll have an incision in the area where the cartilage was harvested. These incisions are typically small and should heal quickly. Dr. Epstein will carefully choose incision sites to minimize the appearance of any scarring.

Do you need a cartilage graft? The best way to find out is to come in for a consultation. Call and schedule yours today.