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Cleft Rhinoplasty Study and Evolution

Agochukwu-Nwubah, Nneamaka, MD; Boustany, Ashley, MD; Vasconez, Henry C., MD

doi: 10.1097/SCS.0000000000005304
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Background: Most patients with a cleft lip will have a cleft lip nasal deformity. The nasal deformities are complex and are difficult to surgically correct as a result of the anatomical issues and deficiencies. In this study, the authors analyzed and reviewed nasal pathology and surgical maneuvers in patients with cleft lip nasal deformity treated by the senior author over the past 15 years.

Methods: A retrospective review was performed on patients who underwent a rhinoplasty for a cleft nasal deformity from the years of 2002 to 2017. Patients were stratified by unilateral and bilateral cleft lip. For each variable, comparisons were made between unilateral and bilateral cases.

Results: 39 patients had a unilateral cleft lip nasal deformity, while 17 had a bilateral cleft lip nasal deformity. Patients with a unilateral cleft nasal deformity had a significantly higher incidence of vestibular stenosis and septal deviation. Regarding surgical maneuvers, unilateral cleft lip patients had a relatively higher utilization of septoplasty, spreader grafts, and alar grafts compared to bilateral cleft lip patients. Bilateral cleft lip patients had a relatively higher utilization of dorsal hump reduction, columella strut grafts, and nasal tip grafts. These differences were not statistically significant. Unilateral cleft lip patients had a statistically significant higher use of alveolar support at the time of rhinoplasty.

Conclusions: The rhinoplasty operation in patients with cleft lip nasal deformity is uniquely challenging and rewarding. This operation has undergone an evolution in our own practice and has led to improved outcomes for these patients.

Division of Plastic Surgery, Department of Surgery, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY.

Address correspondence and reprint requests to Nneamaka Agochukwu-Nwubah, MD, Division of Plastic Surgery, Department of Surgery, University of Kentucky, 740 S. Limestone, Suite K448, Lexington, KY 40535; E-mail: nneagochukwu@gmail.com

Received 24 August, 2018

Accepted 9 December, 2018

This work was presented at the 2018 Annual American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons Meeting in New York, New York.

The authors report no conflicts of interest.

© 2019 by Mutaz B. Habal, MD.