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Health Talk - Anthony Sparano, M.D.
Anthony Sparano, M.D.
Sparano Face and Nasal Institute
3350 State Route 138
Building 1, Suite 118
Wall, NJ 07719
(732) 280-FACE (3223)
What has shaped your interest in surgery of the nose?
Rhinoplasty, which is nasal reshaping surgery, sparked my interest in facial plastic surgery. Rhinoplasty is both interesting and challenging, in that it involves changing several anatomic variables of the nose, which influence one another. We create a delicate balance between the structure of the nose itself, and then between the nose and face itself. I appreciate the art of rhinoplasty, and the planning necessary to exactly influence certain outcomes.
It seems medicine is always evolving. Have there been significant changes to rhinoplasty or nasal reshaping surgery over recent years?
For the most part, the principles have remained the same. For a while, in the 1980s and 1990s, there was a classic “rhinoplasty” appearance with a nasal tip that appeared “done” and often unnatural. The goals of rhinoplasty now should be quite different. There is no doubt the aim remains to create aesthetic beauty of the nose. However, we aim to do so in a way that preserves an uncompromised natural appearance to the nose. I often tell patients what my mentor told me, that a beautiful nose is one you should see past, into someone’s eyes.
Just as important is a true emphasis on preserving perfect nasal function. Some outdated techniques were overly aggressive. Often in rhinoplasty, you can see changes to the nose over years. It’s extremely important to restructure the nose for stability, so the nose maintains its beauty with perfect nasal breathing across time.
You perform a lot of skin cancer reconstruction of the face, and specifically the nose. Does this work help you as a cosmetic surgeon, or vice versa?
I can definitely say these two aspects of surgery influence one another, but overall they’re quite different. It’s like anything else, wherein the more intricately and frequently you work with something, the more you appreciate subtle nuances. Nasal reconstruction is truly an art in itself. The same is true for facial reconstruction in general, but the nose imposes certain challenges especially.
Skin cancer reconstruction is something I regard as a privilege. Cancer defects of the face are often very intimidating to patients. Helping patients work through this is a special experience. The goals of surgery are to avoid distortion of associated facial anatomy and to set patients up for absolute minimal scarring. We take this surgery very seriously and it has become a dedicated clinical passion of mine.
To answer the question more precisely, however, I’d say cancer reconstruction work has benefitted me as an aesthetic surgeon. As a reconstructive surgeon, you quickly learn how to appreciate the subtleties of an individual’s anatomy and when to avoid versus pursue manipulation of tissue to achieve certain goals.
What are some trends you’re seeing in cosmetic enhancement of the face?
The trend I’m seeing involves how patients approach their requested elective enhancements. What I mean is, the whole “less is more” insight has become actualized for patients, and this is profoundly important as a facial surgeon. Whether it’s a simple injectable treatment or a necklift surgery, patients have very specific wishes and expectations. I love this as a facial specialist, because it allows explicit discussion of the goals of any given procedure. For example, we don’t just “Botox the forehead” anymore. Instead, we discuss how we wish to influence the brows and how much expression of the lateral forehead we want. The same is true for surgeries. It’s an interesting art form, which I respect very much.
The Sparano Face and Nasal Institute was founded by Anthony Sparano, M.D., a double board certified facial plastic and reconstructive surgeon. Dr. Sparano completed his training at the University of Pennsylvania and University of Michigan, has authored over 30 peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters, and has taught several courses around the country. Dr. Sparano has made a commitment to excellence during all stages of his professional career, and today practices with the highest standard of care.
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