Facial plast Surg 2010; 26(4): 320-327
DOI: 10.1055/s-0030-1262314
© Thieme Medical Publishers

Objective Measures in Aesthetic and Functional Nasal Surgery: Perspectives on Nasal Form and Function

Sachin S. Pawar1 , Guilherme J.M Garcia2 , Julia S. Kimbell3 , John S. Rhee1
  • 1Department of Otolaryngology and Communication Sciences, Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • 2Department of Pharmacology, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, North Carolina
  • 3Department of Otolaryngology, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, North Carolina
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Publication History

Publication Date:
27 July 2010 (online)


The outcomes of aesthetic and functional nasal surgery are difficult to assess objectively because of the intricate balance between nasal form and function. Despite historical emphasis on patient-reported subjective measures, objective measures are gaining importance in both research and the current outcomes-driven health care environment. Objective measures currently available have several shortcomings that limit their routine clinical use. In particular, the low correlation between objective and subjective measures poses a major challenge. However, advances in computer, imaging, and bioengineering technology are now setting the stage for the development of innovative objective assessment tools for nasal surgery that can potentially address some of the current limitations. Assessment of nasal form after aesthetic surgery is evolving from two-dimensional analysis to more sophisticated three-dimensional analysis. Similarly, assessment of nasal function is evolving with the introduction of computational fluid dynamics techniques, which allow for a detailed description of the biophysics of nasal airflow. In this article, we present an overview of objective measures in both aesthetic and functional nasal surgery and discuss future trends and applications that have the potential to change the way we assess nasal form and function.