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  • Writer's pictureAesthetic Skin

Open Septoplasty: Indications and Treatment

Updated: Jun 26

plastic surgeon in black shirt with long hair and a drawing of the anatomy of a face in the background, showing what a nose looks like after a septoplasty


The paper "Open septoplasty: indications and treatment" by Mohamad Chaaban and Anil R. Shah, published in the Otolaryngologic Clinics of North America in 2009, presents a comprehensive overview of open septoplasty. This procedure is an evolution of traditional septal surgery approaches, aiming to address septal deflections and deficiencies through the open rhinoplasty technique. The authors detail the historical development of open septoplasty, anatomical considerations, diagnostic criteria for septal deflections, and the technical nuances of performing the surgery.


Open septoplasty is described as an effective method for correcting septal deviations, particularly in complex cases where endonasal techniques might be limited. By employing the open rhinoplasty approach, surgeons gain better exposure and visualization of the nasal septum, allowing for precise modifications and corrections. This approach is particularly beneficial in patients with significant septal deviations, deficiencies, or in revision surgeries where scar tissue and altered anatomy might present additional challenges.

The indications for open septoplasty, as highlighted by Chaaban and Shah, include both aesthetic concerns and functional impairments such as nasal obstruction. The paper emphasizes the importance of a thorough anatomical assessment and diagnosis of septal deflections to determine the most appropriate surgical approach. Technical aspects of open septoplasty, including the management of cartilaginous and bony septal components, are discussed in detail to guide surgeons in achieving optimal outcomes.

In the broader context of septal surgery literature, this paper contributes valuable insights into the selection criteria, advantages, and technical considerations of open septoplasty compared to traditional endonasal techniques. It underscores the evolution of septal surgery towards more open, visually guided procedures that can offer patients significant improvements in both nasal function and aesthetics.

This work by Chaaban and Shah provides a crucial reference for otolaryngologists and facial plastic surgeons, offering a detailed guide on when and how to effectively employ open septoplasty in clinical practice, ensuring patients receive the most appropriate, tailored treatment for their septal deviations [(Chaaban & Shah, 2009)](

The work of Mohamad Chaaban and Anil R. Shah on open septoplasty serves as a pivotal contribution to the field, particularly when juxtaposed with other literature that primarily discusses traditional septoplasty techniques. Their comprehensive overview of open septoplasty, emphasizing its indications, anatomical considerations, and procedural nuances, marks a significant divergence from the conventional endonasal approaches that have dominated the field for years.

Comparison with Traditional Endonasal Septoplasty

Visualization and Access:  Chaaban and Shah's paper underscores the enhanced visualization and access to the septal structure offered by the open approach, a notable advantage over traditional endonasal septoplasty. This is particularly beneficial in complex cases, such as those involving significant deviations, previous surgical alterations, or the need for extensive reshaping.

Precision in Correction: The detailed exposure in open septoplasty allows for more precise correction of septal deviations and deficiencies. In contrast, traditional techniques, while effective for straightforward cases, may limit the surgeon’s ability to accurately address and modify the nasal septum's cartilaginous and bony components.

Indications for Surgery: The indications for employing open septoplasty, as discussed by Chaaban and Shah, include scenarios that might be challenging for endonasal techniques, highlighting its role in managing more complex anatomical and functional nasal issues.

Integration with Rhinoplasty Procedures

Open septoplasty aligns closely with the procedural steps and surgical exposure used in open rhinoplasty, allowing for concurrent aesthetic and functional nasal corrections. This integrated approach is less emphasized in literature focusing solely on endonasal septoplasty, which typically addresses functional concerns without extensive cosmetic alterations.

Evolution of Septal Surgery

Chaaban and Shah’s paper reflects the evolving landscape of septal surgery, moving towards techniques that offer better outcomes through improved surgical access and correction precision. This evolution is mirrored in the broader literature, where there's an increasing acknowledgment of the limitations of traditional techniques in addressing complex or revision cases.

Educational and Training Implications

The detailed description of the open septoplasty technique by Chaaban and Shah also has implications for surgical education and training. It provides a framework for teaching advanced nasal surgery techniques, emphasizing the anatomical understanding and surgical skills necessary for successful outcomes.


In summary, Chaaban and Shah's work on open septoplasty represents a significant contribution to the septoplasty literature, distinguishing itself by detailing an approach that offers enhanced precision, better access, and a wider range of indications. It serves as a critical reference for surgeons facing complex septal deviations, advocating for a more open, integrative approach to nasal surgery that encompasses both functional and aesthetic considerations.

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