VIDEO: ‘Nose jobs can change lives’

Turkish expert talks to about the magical changes rhinoplasty brings to the face

“If you fix someone’s nose they will kiss better, get more joy from eating and of course smell better – but really you can improve someone’s sex life if you can fix their nose.”

Professor Fazil Apaydin, president of the European Society of Facial Plastic Surgery, is in Port Elizabeth for an ear, nose and throat surgeon conference this weekend and the coming week and spoke with bubbly enthusiasm about the great passion of his career – rhinoplasties, or nose jobs, as they are commonly known.

On Monday he will speak at the inaugural conference of the newly established South African Rhinoplasty Society.

Apaydin led four surgeries at Netcare Greenacres Hospital yesterday and was joined by ENT surgeons, plastic surgeons, facial and maxillary surgeons from all over the country.

Local ENT surgeon Dr Cameron McInstosh said the first society of facial plastic surgery in the country had recently been established and would have its first conference on Monday.

“The idea is that it is an academic endeavour to improve the standard in plastic surgery,” he said.

McIntosh said they were honoured to get Apaydin to speak at their first conference.

Apaydin said the European society had more than 1 000 members and had been going for 40 years.

McIntosh said Apaydin had performed four surgeries yesterday.

The first was on a teenager with a hockey stick injury to her face and the second a man who had a rugby injury.

The third patient was a woman injured in a car accident, while the fourth had developed complications after having had surgery some 40 years ago.

Turkish professor Fazil Apaydin led four teaching nose surgeries at Greenacres Hospital yesterday. More about the magical changes of rhinoplasty
Picture: Werner Hills

“They all came to me to say they struggled to breathe.

“I then said: ‘How about we fix how your nose works – and how it looks too?’

“Surgery is like marriage,” Apaydin said. “You can never know what will happen in the end. It is full of surprises.”

He said in his hometown in Turkey the divorce rate was 47% so he was delighted to say that he was doing better at surgery than others were doing with marriage.

Apaydin completed his medical training in Turkey, specialised as an ENT surgeon and then sub-specialised in plastic surgery. He now teaches worldwide.

“When you teach, you also learn. I always like to learn more. We always try to be better than before. We keep on changing.”

He said rhinoplasties, or nose jobs, were the most popular facial plastic surgery procedures he was asked to perform.

“The first week is awful. It will bruise. It can turn purple, but it gets better. It will take the inside of the nose three to four weeks to recover.

“Once they are healed patients come to kiss my hands. They sleep better. They eat better. They kiss better.”

He said many patients reported that their social life and the way they operated in the world was affected by their embarrassment over their noses.

Prof Fazil Apaydin, second from left, with Dr Cameron McIntosh, centre, and Dr Stuart Geldenhuys in the operating theatre in Port Elizabeth before the conference on Monday
Picture: Werner Hills

“We call it nasal neurosis. They want to hide their noses.”

He said as such rhinoplasty was life changing surgery.

“I don’t do them before age 18 because you need to be mature.

“I am not a hairdresser. What I do stays with you. It is a decision that must be taken by a mature person.”

Apaydin said most of his patients were women.

“Male patients are usually problematic, especially after a certain age.

“I always say if someone is a single, immature male – old and narcissistic – that is bad news for the plastic surgeon.”

He said some of his colleagues even refused to do rhinoplasty for men.

Apaydin said fixing a patient’s nose was the most difficult and trickiest of the facial surgeries.

“It brings about a three-dimensional change to the face. You need to think all the time how it is going to look at the end.”

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