The nose is the centre most part of the face is also the most noticeable. Any deformity or even minor blemishes on the nose can be a cause of unnecessary distraction.
Rhinophyma is thickening of the skin of the nose and it is usually considered the last or most severe stage of acne rosacea, however many patients with rhinophyma may not have rosacea at all. Nearly all patients with rhinophyma will have oily or greasy skin. It is the thickening of the oil glands referred to as ‘sebaceous glands’ that leads to a build-up of ‘sebum’ and distortion of the skin of the nose.
Rhinophyma occurs almost exclusively in middle-aged to elderly Caucasian men but can also affect women and darker skin patients.
Is Rhinophyma related to alcohol abuse?
It is not uncommon for patients with rhinophyma to be stigmatised by their condition. Although there is little evidence to suggest the role of chronic alcoholism in rhinophyma, the term ‘whisky nose’ unfortunately almost always gets associated with this condition. Many patients with rhinophyma can be teetotallers or consume very little alcohol.
What are the types of Rhinophyma?
Rhinophyma can be of varying severities.
Rhinophyma is classed as minor if there is redness, broken blood vessels and mild thickening and coarsening of the nasal skin texture. Patients often complain of oily skin and on squeezing the skin of the nose, oily secretion ‘sebum’ can be expressed from the pores. Some patients may complain of whitish discharge often with offensive odour from the pores of the nose.
Major or severe rhinophyma is one which has prominent lumps on the nose leading to distortion of the architecture of the nose and may also lead to obstruction of nasal passages, and breathing difficulty. Most patients have moderate rhinophyma, the severity of which lies between the minor and major spectrums.
Treatments for Rhinophyma
Generally speaking, medical treatments tend not to work very well in the treatment of Rhinophyma. Acne medication may reduce the very early or minor rhinophyma.
There are many other available treatments options, including:
- Shaving of the skin
- Carbon Dioxide laser
Carbon dioxide laser treatment for rhinophyma
Carbon dioxide laser can be used to treat rhinophyma and is perhaps the best treatment. Carbon Dioxide lasers are one of the most challenging lasers to use so always check your practitioner has experience in using this device for treating rhinophyma. The procedure is carried out under local anaesthetic and uses a 3 injection technique to numb the nose. The procedure is then totally painless.
It takes 30-45 minutes to resurface the entire skin of the nose and even the most ‘challenging’ cases can be dealt with within this time frame. specialist nurses, then apply antiseptic ointment to the treated site under dressings which the patient can take off in 48 hours. There is no need to stay overnight in the hospital. The affected area then needs to be washed twice a day following which antiseptic ointment is again applied. The crust formed after laser treatment washes off naturally, and the burnt appearance seen immediately after laser treatment gives way to red skin in 7-10 days. Healing process continues and complete new skin formation occurs in 3-4 weeks.
Whilst, the procedure is extremely safe, no surgical/laser procedure is entirely free from side effects. Risks include redness that may last for up to 3 months following laser treatment, scarring, and pale skin. The benefits of this treatment are long standing and can even be permanent and usually only one session is needed to achieve satisfactory results.
Rhinophyma Treatment Results
Find out first hand how a 45 minute rhinophyma procedure changed one of our patients lives. The full case study is available to read here.
If you would like to speak to us, fill in the enquiry form and we will be in touch, or call us on 0161 509 1294.
Why choose Everything Skin Clinic?
At Everything Skin Clinic™, we have a team of highly trained Consultant dermatologists, who have completed specialist training in Dermatology and are on the specialist register of the General Medical Council. All our consultants hold substantive contracts with the best Dermatology centres in leading NHS hospitals. Therefore, you can be certain of the highest quality private care.
We offer a range of treatments and can offer one, or a combination of treatments to achieve the best results. Unlike many other clinics, we can offer diagnosis and treatment all under one roof by expert consultant dermatologist, so you know you’ll be in safe hands.