The term “scarless” rhinoplasty is widely marketed. In reality, all incisions heal in a manner different than untouched skin. Incisions can be well-hidden and so subtle that almost no other individual would notice their presence. They can also be poorly hidden and/or abundantly obvious due to abnormal features.
The nose surgery (rhinoplasty) technique marketed as “scarless” is also referred to as a closed, or endonasal rhinoplasty. The technique was developed over one hundred years ago and is associated with some of the earliest rhinoplasty surgeries. However, the technique is currently not widely taught to training physicians. A closed rhinoplasty requires a detailed understanding of nasal anatomy, because it involves manipulating that anatomy in ways that do not match the classically learned visualization of the anatomy.
All the incisions are placed inside the nose, also called the nasal vestibule. This approach can reduce post-operative swelling and bruising. But while this hides the incisions from external view, the same healing process occurs with these incisions as with others. Therefore, there truly is no such thing as a “scarless” rhinoplasty as defined by the technique used.