To assess whether significant changes in smell perception occur after septorhinoplasty, and evaluate whether septum deviation, allergic rhinitis, and surgical technique affect postoperative smell perception.
Thirty-four patients (> 18 years old) awaiting septorhinoplasty were included, while those with previous severe hyposmia or anosmia were excluded. The participants self-assessed their smell perception using a 100-mm visual analogue scale (VAS), where 0 mm indicated the inability to smell and 100 mm indicated normal smell perception. The University of Pennsylvania Smell Identification Test (UPSIT) was applied before the procedure, and 4 and 12 weeks after surgery.
The UPSIT score showed no significant changes at 4 (p = 0.59; 95% CI − 0.35 to + 2) or 12 weeks (p = 0.16; 95% CI − 1.13 to + 0.66). A comparison of the VAS scores before and 4 weeks after surgery (p = 0.62; 95% CI − 0.63 to + 0.39) yielded similar results. However, the average VAS scores improved 12 weeks after surgery (p = 0.007; 95% CI + 0.22 to + 1.30). Olfactory function, measured using the UPSIT, was not influenced by open or closed surgical techniques (p ≥ 0.10), the presence or absence of rhinitis (p ≥ 0.15), or obstructive septum deviation (p ≥ 0.38). Twelve weeks after surgery, self-evaluated smell perception was better in patients who underwent a closed procedure rather than an open procedure (p = 0.006; 95% CI: −1.39 to −0.37).
A validated test demonstrates that septorhinoplasty does not compromise smell perception 4 and 12 weeks after surgery. However, it might improve smell perception by the self-report observation.
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Research involving human participants
A prospective observational study was made involving humans. The study was reviewed and approved by the local research ethics committee.
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Kokubo, L.C.P., Carvalho, T.B.O., Fornazieri, M.A. et al. Effects of septorhinoplasty on smell perception. Eur Arch Otorhinolaryngol 276, 1247–1250 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00405-019-05356-1
- Smell perception
- Septal deviation