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The Public Face of Rhinoplasty: Impact on Perceived Attractiveness and Personality

Lu, Stephen M. M.D., M.Div.; Hsu, David T. Ph.D.; Perry, Adam D. M.D.; Leipziger, Lyle S. M.D.; Kasabian, Armen K. M.D.; Bartlett, Scott P. M.D.; Thorne, Charles H. M.D.; Broer, P. Niclas M.D.; Tanna, Neil M.D., M.B.A.

Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery: October 2018 - Volume 142 - Issue 4 - p 881-887
doi: 10.1097/PRS.0000000000004731
Cosmetic: Original Articles
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Background: The authors assess the impact of rhinoplasty on public perception of a patient’s appearance and personality.

Methods: A survey was created using standardized before-and-after photographs of 10 Caucasian women who had undergone primary rhinoplasty. Photographs of two additional women who had not undergone facial surgery were randomly included as controls, for a total of 12 survey items. Preoperative and postoperative photographs were placed side by side. The survey was administered by means of crowd-sourcing. Respondents were asked to evaluate which photograph better represented 11 traits of appearance or personality, according to a seven-point Likert scale. A score of 1 meant the preoperative photograph was much better, 7 meant the postoperative photograph was much better, and 4 meant no difference. T tests and analyses of variance were used to evaluate rating changes for each trait and differences between demographic groups.

Results: There were 264 responses received. Averaged scores across the 10 survey patients produced a value for each appearance or personality trait. In 10 of 11 categories (i.e., symmetry, youthfulness, facial harmony, likeability, trustworthiness, confidence, femininity, attractiveness, approachability, and intelligence), the postoperative photograph was significantly favorable compared with the preoperative photograph (p < 0.00001). The preoperative photograph was rated higher only in aggressiveness (p < 0.001). The same scores were calculated for the controls; no significant difference in any category was seen except confidence, where the right image was viewed as more confident (mean, 4.19; p < 0.005).

Conclusion: Aesthetic rhinoplasty improves the public perception of a person’s appearance and personality in multiple aspects.

This and Related “Classic” Articles Appear on for Journal Club Discussions.

Stony Brook and Hempstead, N.Y.; Philadelphia, Penn.; and Munich, Germany

From the Department of Psychiatry and Psychology, Stony Brook University; Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia; Technical University Teaching Hospital Munich, Munich, Germany; and the Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Hofstra Northwell School of Medicine.

Received for publication November 11, 2017; accepted April 24, 2018.

Presented at Plastic Surgery The Meeting 2017, Annual Meeting of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, in Orlando, Florida, October 6 through 10, 2017.

Disclosure:The authors have no financial interest to declare in relation to the content of this article.

A “Hot Topic Video” by Editor-in-Chief Rod J. Rohrich, M.D., accompanies this article. Go to and click on “Plastic Surgery Hot Topics” in the “Digital Media” tab to watch.

Neil Tanna, M.D., M.B.A., 130 East 77th Street, 10th Floor, New York, N.Y. 11042,

Copyright © 2018 by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons