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Steven M. Denenberg, M.D.
Steven M. Denenberg, M.D.

Shortening a Long Nose

So far in our perusal of common complaints that people have about their noses, we have looked at humps and at wide tips.  In this chapter, we will look at noses that are long and discuss how they are shortened.

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The nose pictured above was shortened during her rhinoplasty.  A small face with huge pretty eyes didn't seem to fit with the long nose.

Click on any image in this tutorial to see a greatly-enlarged version
How do you measure the length of a nose?  Many people would just say, "I can tell a long nose when I see one."  There are different methods of assessing nasal length, and I'll give you a feel of what I look for.  Compare the black and white diagrams above with the color pictures at the top of this page as you read.

In a previous chapter we discussed the concept of the "tip defining point," the place along the profile where the exact position of the tip of the nose seems to reside.  In the after picture above right it's a little easier to find the tip defining point than it is to find that spot on the before picture.  I have placed light blue arrows at the tip defining points.

We perceive the length of the nose as the distance from where the nose begins, between the eyes (white arrows), down to where our eye thinks the nose ends, typically at the tip defining point (light blue arrows).

The red arrows, spanning the distance from the white arrow to the blue arrow, show the apparent length of this nose before and after surgery.  We can also see the apparent length of the nose in the length of the dark blue lines, which follow the profile contour from the beginning of the nose at the eyes down to the tip defining points.

(Use the page links, immediately below this paragraph, to navigate through the pages of this chapter.)

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All surgery depicted in this essay, except where noted, was performed by Dr. Denenberg