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Functional Rhinoplasty in Palo Alto, San Jose, and the Bay Area

What is functional rhinoplasty?

Functional rhinoplasty is designed to correct structural problems or abnormalities that impair a patient’s breathing. Because this type of rhinoplasty deals with delicate and complex nasal structures, it requires the skilled hand and years of experience of a qualified plastic surgeon such as Dr. Jill Hessler. Once a functional rhinoplasty has been performed, the patient will be able to breathe much more easily, and can live an improved life. 

What can functional rhinoplasty address?

Deviated septum

A deviated septum (the bone and cartilage that divides the nostrils) can cause headaches, nasal drip, discomfort in the face, noisy breathing, constant sinus infections, and congestion. A septoplasty is typically performed to correct this condition by improving the alignment of the septum. This may involve trimming, re-positioning, or replacing the bone and cartilage.

Enlarged turbinates

Turbinates are structures on the inside of the nose that contain bone and mucous lining. They are responsible for purifying the air that flows through the nose. When the turbinates become enlarged, they interfere with normal breathing. A turbinectomy involves removing a portion of the turbinates to improve breathing function. Another approach is a turbinoplasty, which involves making changes to the turbinates without removing any part of them.

Nasal polyps

Nasal polyps are benign growths that can develop on the lining of the nasal passages or sinuses. They may impair breathing or cause sinus infections and other complications. Functional rhinoplasty can be performed to remove the nasal polyps and improve symptoms.

Nasal valve collapse

Nasal valve collapse can cause snoring, congestion, bleeding, crusting at the nostrils, and difficulty breathing. Correcting this condition may involve using spreader grafts to create the support necessary for the valves to remain open and allow proper breathing.


The initial recovery period for functional rhinoplasty typically lasts 1 to 2 weeks. Common side effects include bruising, swelling, and mild soreness. Dr. Hessler may recommend or prescribe medication to minimize discomfort. A splint may be placed over the nose to aid healing. If so, it will be which will be removed a week after surgery. 

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Candidates for functional rhinoplasty

The best candidates for functional rhinoplasty are individuals in Palo Alto, San Jose, and the Bay Area who experience obstructed nasal breathing due to a birth defect, acquired deformity, injury, or trauma to the nose. Symptoms may include:

  • Nasal congestion
  • Impaired breathing
  • Reduced sense of smell
  • Nosebleeds
  • Recurrent sinus infections
  • Sinus pressure headaches
  • Dry mouth

What to expect during your consultation

Before recommending functional rhinoplasty to you, Dr. Hessler will meet with you personally. During your consultation, she will perform a physical evaluation of your nose, and she will also discuss your complete medical history, including whether you’ve had previous nose surgeries. She will also ask you to describe any concerns regarding your nose, both cosmetic and functional. Using this information, Dr. Hessler will design a treatment plan that achieves the most desired outcome. Depending on your needs and goals, your rhinoplasty procedure may be cosmetic, functional, or both.

Hessler Plastic Surgery for functional rhinoplasty in Palo Alto, San Jose, and the Bay Area

For those seeking functional rhinoplasty in Palo Alto, San Jose, and the Bay Area, Dr. Jill Hessler is the perfect choice. Rhinoplasty is one of our top procedures, and is also one of Dr. Hessler’s areas of focus. She is an award-winning, double board-certified facial plastic surgeon with over a decade in practice. She has been widely recognized as both a local and national leader in her field, and she is a frequent speaker at national plastic surgery conferences.

Under her guidance at Hessler Plastic Surgery, the staff is incredibly comprehensive, attending to every detail and caring for patients with warm and professional service. We are also proud to have a fuller AAAASF accredited surgical center adjacent to our clinical space for discrete procedures. To schedule a consulation with Dr. Hessler for functional rhinoplasty, contact us today.

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