The 'butterfly' graft in functional secondary rhinoplasty

J Madison Clark, Ted A Cook
Laryngoscope 2002, 112 (11): 1917-25

OBJECTIVE: To describe a surgical technique (the conchal cartilage "butterfly" graft) which, when used in properly selected patients, has been found to be a dependable method for alleviation of postrhinoplasty internal nasal valve dysfunction.

STUDY DESIGN: Retrospective chart review.

METHODS: Analysis of consecutive patients with weakness and/or collapse of the upper lateral cartilages following rhinoplasty. Seventy-two patients (37 women and 35 men, age range 17-76 y) had severe nasal obstruction and were found to have indications for this procedure. All patients had undergone at least one rhinoplastic procedure. All patients were followed for a minimum of 2 years after surgery.

RESULTS: All 72 patients experienced significant subjective improvement in relative nasal obstruction. Two patients (3%) reported less than total resolution of their difficulty breathing through their nose; the remaining 70 patients (97%) reported complete resolution of their nasal airway problems. No patients reported their postoperative nasal obstruction as the same or worse than their preoperative baseline. Sixty-two patients (86%) reported improvement in the appearance of their nose, 8 patients (11%) felt that their appearance was unchanged, and 2 patients (3%) felt that the appearance of their nose was made worse by the procedure.

CONCLUSIONS: Patients presenting with nasal obstruction after rhinoplasty are frequently found to have collapse and/or weakening of their upper lateral cartilages with resulting nasal valve dysfunction. The conchal cartilage "butterfly" graft is a technique which, when properly performed during revision rhinoplasty, yields predictable functional and cosmetic results with minimal morbidity.

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