Breakthroughs in Plastic Surgery

Nose Jobs May Be Unnecessary for Certain Patients

Nose Jobs May Be Unnecessary for Certain Patients

Nose jobs may be unnecessary for patients suffering from a deviated septum, thanks to new innovations in plastic surgery.

Innovations in surgery may eliminate unnecessary nose jobs for some patients.

A report in the January/February issue of Archives of Facial Plastic Surgery indicates that the method of attaching a durable polymer called polydioxanone to septum cartilage makes it easier for surgeons to perform a septoplasty.

The septoplasty is an operation that straightens out a deviated septum. But in years past, this has been a tricky procedure, since attempted surgeries tend to weaken the cartilage in the inner nose. Surgeons have had to resort to fixing only the septum cartilage that is visible. Even then, trying to strengthen these regions with splints often failed, resulting in cosmetic or functional problems in the nose on a long-term basis. The more primitive forms of septum surgery didn’t maintain their visual results, and some patients re-developed their breathing problems.

But in 1996, a procedure was developed that seems to have satisfied doctors and patients both. Surgeons are now able to create strength in the septum by removing its cartilage and grafting it to small, durable plates of polydioxanone. From there, doctors re-implant the “new,” grafted cartilage back into the septum. Out of the 396 patients who underwent this procedure in 1996, 93.2 percent of them attained a straight nasal septum that sustained itself for up to 10 years later. No complications were reported on a short or long-term basis, and most of the patients observed improved breathing and nasal flow. To date, the study authors wrote, this procedure has produced largely successful surgical results.

“The use of polydioxanone plates during septal surgery facilitates external septoplasty, corrects several combined nasal deformities, such as post-traumatic and iatrogenic [medically induced] irregularities, and avoids postoperative saddle nose deformity without risk to the patient,” researchers noted.

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