The Effect of Nasal Tip Rotation on Upper Lip Length

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Increasing the nasolabial angle (NLA) with tip rotation generates the appearance of a lengthened lower facial third. In particular, the upper lip show seems increased following elevation of the nasal tip.


The purpose of this study is to quantify the impact of tip rotation on upper lip length (ULL), and to establish a predictable correlation between the two.


A retrospective cohort study of rhinoplasty patients with increased tip rotation, using either caudal septal extension graft (CSEG) or columellar strut graft (CS), was performed. Three-dimensional photos were obtained and analyzed anthropometrically and used to measure the ULL and NLA. The deltas between NLA and ULL at the various time points, was then compared using linear regression with P < .05 recognized as statistically significant.


One-hundred and fifty patients were identified and 88 patients met inclusion criteria. CS and CSEG were used in 40% (n = 36), and 60% (n = 52), respectively. Three-dimensional assessment showed that as the NLA positively correlated with the ULL in both cohorts. The CSEG group created a greater NLA and ULL compared to the CS cohort. Both NLA and ULL decreased over time, but remained statistically increased as compared with preoperative measurements. For every one degree of NLA increase, the ULL increases by 0.05 mm.


Increasing nasal tip rotation in rhinoplasty results in greater upper lip show. Both CS and CSEG can effectively increase tip rotation and ULL. A predictable correlation of nearly 0.05 mm of ULL for every 1 degree of tip rotation is shown.

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