Not all nose disfigurement occurs inside the nose. Sometimes the nose changes shape due to the skin covering the nose, which is the case with severe rhinophyma. When the skin glands become overactive, the skin can become thicker and nodular in appearance. With rhinophyma, the skin on the tip and base of the nose thickens and can change the shape of the nose and even impact breathing.
What Causes Rhinophyma?
The ruddy, bulbous appearance of rhinophyma was once referred to as a “drinker’s nose” and was thought to be related to drinking too much alcohol. However, this was incorrect, and rhinophyma is now known to be unrelated to alcohol consumption. Although the exact cause is not known, it is related to rosacea and appears most commonly in men.
Rhinophyma is progressive, and the nose can continue to change in color, shape and form. For treatment, there are some topical options that may be effective in the early stages to slow progression. When the condition has begun to change the shape of the nose or the skin has become so heavy that the nasal passages begin to close, removing or thinning the skin is necessary to improve the appearance and function of the nose.
Laser therapy and dermabrasion treatments can be used to remove layers of skin to reshape the nose. This can be performed as a surgical procedure on an outpatient basis, with local anesthesia or sedation. Joshua D. Rosenberg, MD, in NYC can determine the best option to reshape the nose and improve its appearance, depending on the specific needs and desires of the patient. If you suffer from rhinophyma and want to explore your options for treatment, contact our NYC or Upper East Side office to schedule a consultation with Dr. Rosenberg.