The repair of full-thickness nasal alar defects presents difficulties because of their complex 3-dimensional structure. Reconstructions using inappropriate methods may lead to asymmetries and dissatisfying functional results. In this study, our aim was to present the repairs of full-thickness alar defects performed using cartilage-supported nasolabial perforator flaps.
Materials and Methods
Eight patients who presented to our clinic between January 2011 and April 2014 with full-thickness defects in the alar wings were included in this study. The nasolabial perforator flap was prepared on the basis of the closest perforator to the defect area and in a way to include 2 to 3 mm of subcutaneous adipose tissue. The medial section of the flap was adapted to form the nasal lining. In the 7 patients in whom cartilage support was used, the cartilage graft was obtained from the septum nasi. After the cartilage was placed on the flap, the lateral section of the flap was folded over the medial section and the defect was repaired. In 1 patient in whom cartilage support was not required, the flap was folded over itself before the repair was performed. The flap donor area was primarily repaired.
No detachment around the suture lines, infection, venous insufficiency in the flap, or partial or total flap losses were observed in any of the patients. Retraction developed in 1 patient in whom no cartilage support was used. No retraction was observed in any of the patients in whom cartilage support was used. The results were functionally and esthetically satisfying in all the patients.
The greatest advantage of perforator-based nasolabial flaps is the greater mobilization achieved in comparison with the other nasolabial flaps. Thus, full-thickness defects can be repaired in 1 session in some patients, no revision is required around the flap pedicle, and much less donor area morbidity occurs. Nasal alar reconstructions performed using this type of flap lead to both esthetically and functionally satisfying results.