Background: Nasal appearance is one of the most important factors in determining the success of a cleft repair. This preliminary study aimed to evaluate a simple variant of primary nose repair technique to achieve an optimal nasal esthetic outcome along with the lip repair in the setting of traveling charity programs, where time is an obvious limitation. Methods: A cross-sectional study on the outcome of nose repair was conducted within the setting of traveling cleft charity programs. Nasal repair was done during primary cleft lip repair by bilateral reverse-J incisions inside the nostril followed by an interdomal suture, without postoperative nasal retainer. Pre- and postoperative photographs were evaluated based on two variables: (1) alar facial symmetry ratio and (2) columellar angle. The significance of improvements was assessed using Wilcoxon or paired samples t test. Postoperative esthetic outcome was also evaluated based on the Fujimoto-Imai method. Results: From January 2007 to February 2012, there were 68 unilateral and 19 bilateral cleft cases, among which 44 unilateral and 3 bilateral cleft cases were eligible. The bilateral group was discarded from this study for being too small. In the unilateral group, the improvement in both variables was significant (p value < 0.05). Esthetic outcome was found to be excellent in 21 unilateral cleft patients and good in 23. Conclusions: This preliminary study showed that interdomal suture via bilateral reverse-J incisions is a potentially effective method to repair unilateral cleft lip nose deformity in the setting of traveling charity programs. Level of evidence: Level IV, therapeutic study.
- Cleft lip