Nasal shape and gender of the observer: Implications for rhinoplasty

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Journal Article

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Interim status: Citation only.

Springer, I. N., Zernial, O., Warnke, P. H., Wiltfang, J., Russo, P. A. & Wolfart, S. (2009). Nasal shape and gender of the observer: Implications for rhinoplasty. Journal of craniomaxillofacial surgery, 37(1), 3-7.

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2009 HERDC submission. FoR code: 1103

© Copyright 2008 European Association for Cranio-Maxillofacial Surgery


Background: In a previous study we focused on gender specific nasal shapes. The aim of this study was to evaluate if preferences in nasal shape are also dependent on the gender of the observer.

Methods: Stratified on the basis of each photographed subject’s (n ¼ 311) own evaluation, female and male composite pictures of ‘‘average’’ (n ¼ 128, each), ‘‘optimal’’ (n ¼ 16, each) and ‘‘most unpleasant’’ (n ¼ 8, each) noses were created in a previous study. These composites were assessed by 308 independent female and male judges using a visual analogue scale.

Results: On average, female judges were found to accord significantly higher ratings of attractiveness as compared to male judges for the composite images independent of the gender of the person shown (p ¼ 0.020). The difference was greatest when assessing most unpleasant male composites (p\0.003) but was not apparent when assessing ‘‘optimal’’ female and ‘‘optimal’’ male noses. Despite this, women displayed the same preferences for ‘‘optimal’’ and ‘‘average’’ noses as compared to the ‘‘most unpleasant’’ noses. In assessing their own noses, women were significantly less satisfied with their appearance in general (p ¼ 0.001) as compared to men.

Conclusions: In comparison to men, women are more critical in assessing the appearance of their own nose as opposed to the noses of other people. The implications of this for rhinoplasty, so far as considering the degree of influence of the gender of a person assessing a prospective patient’s nose remains a matter of conjecture.

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