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Understanding the Flat Nose

A flat nose, characterized by a low or underdeveloped nasal bridge1 and a lack of projection, is a common trait in many ethnic backgrounds. It may present as a wide nasal base, less definition in the nasal contours, or a less pronounced nasal tip. The nose bridge, in particular, can impact the overall facial balance and symmetry.

The cause of a flat nose is primarily genetic, rooted in the hereditary traits passed down through generations. Environmental factors and certain health conditions during developmental stages can also play a role in shaping the nasal structure. In some cases, trauma or injury may contribute to a flatter nose appearance. Understanding these causes is crucial in appreciating the uniqueness of a flat nose2 and the considerations involved in its aesthetic enhancement.

Flat Nose photo

Physiology Behind the Flat Nose

The anatomy of a flat nose typically involves a combination of cartilage and bone structures that are less prominent than in other nose shapes. The nasal bridge, formed by the nasal bones and upper lateral cartilages, may be lower, contributing to the flat appearance. Additionally, the septal and tip cartilages, responsible for the nose’s projection and shape, may be less defined.

Dr. Rizk’s Approach to Enhancing the Flat Nose

In his New York office, Dr. Rizk approaches the nose with a deep understanding of its unique anatomy and his patients’ aesthetic goals. His techniques are tailored to create a natural-looking elevation of the nasal bridge, enhance the tip definition, and harmonize the nose with the patient’s overall facial features.

Elevating the Nasal Bridge

Elevating the nasal bridge with grafts involves carefully placing these materials along the nasal dorsum. This not only adds height to a flat nose bridge but also ensures a natural contour that blends seamlessly with the patient’s facial structure. The choice of graft material and the technique used are determined based on the individual’s nasal anatomy3, skin thickness, and desired outcome.

Refining the Nasal Tip

Dr. Rizk utilizes advanced cartilage reshaping techniques to enhance the tip’s projection and definition. This involves sculpting the tip cartilages, sometimes using suture techniques or additional cartilage grafts to support and define the tip. The aim is to create a tip that is proportionate to the new nasal bridge height and harmonizes with the patient’s overall facial features.

Balancing the Nasal Base

A wide nasal base is a common characteristic of a flat nose. To address this, Dr. Rizk narrows the base, bringing it into proportion with the newly sculpted bridge and tip. This may involve strategic incisions at the base of the nostrils, known as alar base reduction4. By removing small wedges of tissue and then suturing the area, Dr. Rizk can effectively reduce the width of the nasal base.

Harmonizing Facial Features

Dr. Rizk considers factors such as facial width, chin projection, and cheek volume to create a balanced and proportionate outcome. His surgical expertise allows him to make adjustments that enhance the individual’s natural beauty while maintaining or improving the functional aspects of the nose while achieving a balanced appearance with other facial features.

Benefits of Rhinoplasty for a Flat Nose

Patients who undergo rhinoplasty or ethnic rhinoplasty surgery often experience a significant boost in self-confidence. The enhanced nasal contours can bring a newfound sense of facial harmony and symmetry, positively impacting their overall appearance.

Patient Expectations and Customized Solutions

Each patient’s journey is unique, and so are their aesthetic goals. Dr. Rizk spends considerable time during consultations to understand each patient’s desires and concerns. He then crafts a customized surgical plan that aligns with their expectations, ensuring satisfaction with the results.

Recovery and Aftercare

Post-surgery, patients can expect a recovery period during which they may experience swelling and bruising. Dr. Rizk’s minimally invasive techniques often lead to a quicker and more comfortable recovery. Patients are provided with detailed aftercare instructions to ensure optimal healing.

Consult Dr. Rizk for a More Harmonious Appearance

Addressing a flat nose requires a surgeon with a nuanced understanding of facial anatomy and aesthetics. Dr. Sam Rizk stands out for his ability to transform the flat nose into a more defined and aesthetically pleasing feature. His commitment to natural-looking results and patient-centric care makes him a sought-after surgeon for those looking to enhance a flat nose bridge or overall nasal shape.

Contact Dr. Rizk’s NYC office for an appointment and embrace the journey to a more balanced and beautiful you.

Dr Rizk In The Media

Tatler Magazine

Connolly Best Doctor

US Weekly Magazine

Dr. Rizk featured in Town & Country Magazine as one of the masters of the subtle lift and tweak that will turn back time

Voted by peers to New York Magazine's 2013 Top Doctors

Voted by peers to New York Magazine’s 2013 Top Doctors

Latest Advances in Facelift/Necklift Surgery in Plastic Surgery Practice Magazine (Dec'08)

New Advances in Facelifting Techniques by Dr. Sam Rizk

Frequently Asked Questions

Can a flat nose be corrected without surgery?

Non-surgical options for correcting a flat nose are limited and typically less transformative than surgery. Dermal fillers can temporarily enhance the nasal bridge and tip for a subtle increase in projection. However, these treatments need to be repeated periodically and are not ideal if you are looking for longevity of results. For more significant and permanent changes, surgical intervention is recommended.

Will correcting a flat nose affect my breathing?

When performed by an experienced surgeon, correcting a flat nose should not negatively affect your breathing. Many surgical techniques aim to improve the appearance and function of the nose. During the consultation, discuss any pre-existing breathing issues with your surgeon. The procedure can sometimes be combined with functional improvements, like septoplasty, to enhance nasal airflow.

How long does it take to recover from surgery for a flat nose?

Recovery times can vary based on the extent of the surgery and individual healing processes. Generally, patients can expect the initial recovery period to last about 1-2 weeks, during which most of the swelling and bruising will subside. However, it can take several months to a year for the final shape of the nose to fully settle and for all subtle swelling to resolve.

Are there specific risks associated with surgery for a flat nose?

As with any surgical procedure, there are risks involved in the procedure. These can include bleeding, infection, scarring, and the need for revision surgery. However, choosing a skilled and experienced plastic surgeon significantly minimizes these risks. It’s important to thoroughly discuss all potential risks and how they are mitigated before proceeding with the surgery.


1 WebMD – What Is a Low Nasal Bridge? Available: https://www.webmd.com/a-to-z-guides/what-is-a-low-nasal-bridge.

2 National Library of Medicine – The extreme flat nose, its formation and correction Available: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/924820/.

3 NIH.gov – Anatomy of the Nose. Available: https://elementsofmorphology.nih.gov/anatomy-nose.shtml.

4 National Library of Medicine – Alar Base Reduction: Nuances and Techniques. Available: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/34782134/.

Sam Rizk, MD

By Dr. Sam S. Rizk, M.D., FACS.

Dr. Rizk is a double board-certified facial plastic surgeon who specializes in rhinoplasty surgery and a recognized expert on the latest advances in facial plastic surgery techniques. He performs a range of facial plastic surgeries at his New York practice.

Learn more about Dr. Rizk | Dr. Rizk's Google Scholar

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