Comparison of the Surgical Outcomes of Dorsal Augmentation Using Expanded Polytetrafluoroethylene or Autologous Costal Cartilage

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Dorsal augmentation material includes alloplastic implants and autologous tissues. However, there has been no comparison to date of dorsal augmentation using different materials performed by the same surgeon.


To compare the aesthetic outcomes and complications of dorsal augmentation using expanded polytetrafluoroethylene (ePTFE) and autologous costal cartilage (ACC) in rhinoplasty.

Design, Setting, and Participants

A retrospective review of the medical records of 244 patients who underwent dorsal augmentation performed by the same surgeon at the Asan Medical Center using ePTFE or ACC from March 1, 2003, through September 31, 2015.

Main Outcomes and Measures

Patient demographics and surgical procedures were analyzed. The aesthetic outcomes were scored from 1 (worst) to 4 (best) by 3 otolaryngologists. Changes in dorsal height and radix height were measured by comparing preoperative and postoperative profile views. Postoperative complications were also evaluated.


A total of 244 patients who underwent augmentation rhinoplasty were reviewed in this study, including 141 men (57.8%) and 103 women (42.2%). The ePTFE group included 176 patients, and the ACC group comprised 68 patients. In the ePTFE and ACC groups, 96 patients (54.5%) and 45 patients (66.2%) were male, respectively. The patient ages ranged from 11 to 69 years, with a mean (SD) age of 30.3 (11.49) years in the ePTFE group and 36.04 (12.65) years in the ACC group. The mean (SD) aesthetic outcome scores were comparable between the 2 groups: 2.99 (0.05) in the ePTFE group and 2.99 (0.06) in the ACC group (P = .93). The change of dorsal (2.64% in ePTFE group and 5.82% in ACC group) and radix (3.62% in ePTFE group and 3.77% in ACC group) heights were significantly increased after augmentation in both groups (P < .001) even though the dorsal height of the ACC group after augmentation showed a significantly greater increase compared to the ePTFE group (P < .001). However, the complication rate was significantly higher in the ACC group: 4.0% in ePTFE group and 11.8% in ACC group (P = .02).

Conclusions and Relevance

Dorsal augmentation with ACC produces similar aesthetic outcomes but a higher complication rate than dorsal augmentation with ePTFE. This higher complication rate may justify the use of ePTFE implants for dorsal augmentation in Asian patients undergoing rhinoplasty.

Level of Evidence


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