Extended Alar Contour Grafts: An Evolution of the Lateral Crural Strut Graft Technique in Rhinoplasty

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Abstract

Summary:

Modification of the lower lateral cartilage complex is the sine qua non of modern rhinoplasty, and the open approach to rhinoplasty has expanded the number of techniques available to help achieve an aesthetically pleasing tip. The ideal tip has been described as having a diamond-shaped configuration, with the lateral points formed by the tip-defining points, the superior point by the supratip, and the inferior point by the columellar break point. Over the years, various techniques have been described to minimize isolation of the tip and to help achieve the ideal tip configuration: lateral crural strut grafts, alar contour grafts (i.e., rim grafts), alar strut grafts, subdomal grafts, and suturing techniques such as alar flaring sutures. The authors present their technique of the extended alar contour graft, which represents an evolution of the lateral crural strut graft and its marriage with the alar contour graft. Lateral crural abnormalities do not usually occur singularly, but rather are the result of an interplay of several factors. Nevertheless, the recurring theme of orientation and alar support to prevent isolation of the tip by extended alar grooves remains. Extended alar contour grafts are a versatile technique to optimize tip shape and orientation by combining the many positive attributes of lateral crural strut grafts and alar contour grafts.

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