Facial plast Surg 2011; 27(2): 225-234
DOI: 10.1055/s-0030-1271302
© Thieme Medical Publishers

Alar Base Reduction: The Boomerang-Shaped Excision

Hossam M.T Foda1
  • 1Division of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Department of Otolaryngology, Alexandria Medical School, Alexandria, Egypt
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Publication History

Publication Date:
14 March 2011 (online)


A boomerang-shaped alar base excision is described to narrow the nasal base and correct the excessive alar flare. The boomerang excision combined the external alar wedge resection with an internal vestibular floor excision. The internal excision was inclined 30 to 45 degrees laterally to form the inner limb of the boomerang. The study included 46 patients presenting with wide nasal base and excessive alar flaring. All cases were followed for a mean period of 18 months (range, 8 to 36 months). The laterally oriented vestibular floor excision allowed for maximum preservation of the natural curvature of the alar rim where it meets the nostril floor and upon its closure resulted in a considerable medialization of alar lobule, which significantly reduced the amount of alar flare and the amount of external alar excision needed. This external alar excision measured, on average, 3.8 mm (range, 2 to 8 mm), which is significantly less than that needed when a standard vertical internal excision was used (p < 0.0001). Such conservative external excisions eliminated the risk of obliterating the natural alar-facial crease, which did not occur in any of our cases. No cases of postoperative bleeding, infection, or vestibular stenosis were encountered. Keloid or hypertrophic scar formation was not encountered; however, dermabrasion of the scars was needed in three (6.5%) cases to eliminate apparent suture track marks. The boomerang alar base excision proved to be a safe and effective technique for narrowing the nasal base and elimination of the excessive flaring and resulted in a natural, well-proportioned nasal base with no obvious scarring.