Evaluation of Changes in Nasal Airway in Patients Having Undergone Surgically Assisted Maxillary Expansion

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Surgically assisted maxillary expansion (SAME) is used to treat transverse maxillary discrepancies. The effect of this technique on the nasal airway has been the subject of a large number of studies.


The aim of the present study was to identify changes in the nasal airway in patients having undergone SAME.

Materials and Methods

A prospective study was carried out on a sample of 10 patients having undergone SAME who agreed to participate in all phases of the study. Data acquisition involved a questionnaire, Glatzel mirror, and computed tomography measurements in both the preoperative and postoperative periods.


Nasal width increased in all patients following SAME (mean increase: 1.29 mm). The mean opening of the intermaxillary space was 5.30 mm. The postoperative nasal airway was larger in 8 patients (80%), with a mean increase of 0.30 cm2 (18.52%). A significant overall increase (P < 0.05) in the nasal valve angle occurred in the postoperative period. The use of the Glatzel mirror revealed a smaller area of condensation in the postoperative period in only 1 patient.


The nasal airway underwent a positive change following surgically assisted maxillary expansion. Moreover, the nasal valve angle is suggested as a new parameter for the analysis of this improvement.

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