Septal fracture in simple nasal bone fracture

Seung Chul Rhee, Yoo Kyung Kim, Jin Han Cha, So Ra Kang, Heung Sik Park

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

77 Scopus citations


Nasal bone fractures are the most common type of facial fractures. Previous studies have shown that most nasal fractures involve the septum, which can provide an obstacle to the successful reduction of nasal bone fractures. In particular, septal fractures in combination with simple nasal bone fractures are usually unrecognized and untreated at the time of injury. Furthermore, systemized treatment protocols and diagnostic tools for septal fractures in the case of simple nasal bone fracture have not previously been presented. In this study, the clinical findings of septal fractures in cases of simple nasal bone fracture were correlated with symptoms, signs, and computed tomography findings and assessed statistically. The patterns of septal fractures in simple nasal bone fractures were assessed by direct vision via hemitransfixion incision. Of the 52 patients with simple nasal bone fracture who presented over a 3-year period and were included in this study, 10 were female and 42 were male, with an average age of 33.8 years (age range, 18 to 61 years). Fifty of these patients (96.2 percent) showed septal fractures, and septoplasty or submucosal resection was performed on 41 patients (78.8 percent) who manifested severe septal fractures of perioperative septal grade 3 or higher. Closed reduction of the nasal bone fracture only was performed on the remaining 11 patients. Among the signs evident at physical examination, mucosal tearing was found to be statistically significant for septal fracture. Computed tomography was found to be very helpful in diagnosing septal fracture but could not predict its severity accurately (Spearman correlation coefficient between computed tomography septal grading and perioperative septal grading, 33.5 percent). Therefore, computed tomography could not be used as a definitive diagnostic modality for septal fractures in terms of deciding whether septoplasty or submucous resection was needed. It is evident that septal fractures are frequent in simple nasal bone fractures that are not combined with other facial bone fractures. This study confirms that there are differences between radiologic findings and perioperative findings. To reduce the incidence of posttraumatic nasal deformity, meticulous physical examinations with subsequent septoplasty or submucosal resection are needed in the treatment of simple nasal bone fracture.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)45-52
Number of pages8
JournalPlastic and Reconstructive Surgery
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2004


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