May 19

Rhinoplasty Mistake #2: The Pollybeak Deformity

So, what is a pollybeak deformity? Well, that’s the unpleasant and unkind name we give to a nose in which the area just above the tip is too full. Normally, there should be a little dip or depression just above your nasal tip that defines the transition from your bridge to your tip on profile. When that area is high or filled in, we call it a pollybeak.

When it is very full, it can even make the nose look down-turned like a parrot’s beak, thus the name. The reason for this is that the area above the tip often becomes the part of your nose that sticks out or projects the most from your face. This is not the way it should be. Your tip should be the most projecting point of your nose.

Check out the photo below to see a pollybeak deformity indicated by the arrows.

nose pollybeak deformity photo

OK, what causes a pollybeak deformity?

Well, a few things can and they are all preventable. First, a surgeon may not reduce the cartilage enough in the area above your tip. Second, the surgeon may be overaggressive in reducing that area too much in someone with thick skin. In this case, the skin doesn’t contract and flatten out as much as it should and, instead, the area fills in with thick scar tissue. Finally, a surgeon may not provide enough support to your nasal tip. Over time, your tip may droop and make the area above the tip look too full.

Look below to see the plan for fixing this pollybeak deformity. The green area is the area of the bridge that was built up in the last blog post. The blue shaded area shows the cartilage that has to be shaved down to correct this appearance. Notice how the tip itself also has to be deprojected or brought in closer to the face.

photo revision rhinoplasty imaging

See the two photos below for a simulation of this correction. On the left, only the pollybeak was taken down but the tip was not brought in so it looks too high and too pointy. This is not a good look but it is something we also see a lot after first-time rhinoplasty because tip correction is harder to do. On the right, you can see how much more balanced the tip looks now.

images before after pollybeak correction aloneimages before after pollybeak correction with tip brought in

This is by no means a final image. Even the picture on the right doesn’t look right yet because we haven’t addressed the other problems with this nasal tip. It still looks pulled down and rounded and the nostrils have to be addressed. Tune in to our next post to see us pull together the final imaged picture.

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