3D Printed Surgical Guides Applied in Rhinoplasty to Help Obtain Ideal Nasal Profile

Alexandra R. Gordon, Jillian E. Schreiber, Anmol Patel, Oren M. Tepper

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Introduction: As computer simulation for rhinoplasty continues to rise, the technology’s utility extends beyond increasing patient conversion. Virtual simulation of the surgical result can assist with surgical planning and intraoperative decision-making. 3D printed anatomic models or surgical guides based on 3D images may help align surgeons with their original surgical plan. This study aims to evaluate the utility of 3D printed surgical guides as an intraoperative tool to help establish dorsal height and tip position. Methods: Patients undergoing rhinoplasty had preoperative virtual 3D surgical simulations performed. Simulations were used to create a 3D printed nasal kits containing ceramic models of the preoperative nose and simulated nose, sagittal contour guide, and customized postoperative nasal splint. Nasal guides were sterilized for continual intraoperative assessment of profile contour (i.e., dorsal height and tip position). Postoperative 3D images (1–3 months post-op) were then compared to preoperative simulations. The difference between z coordinates and y coordinates determined the difference in projection and rotation, respectively. Results: Fifteen patients met inclusion criteria for this study. With the use of 3D printed surgical guides, the final tip position was on average of 0.8±0.7mm from simulated projection and 0.3±0.2mm from simulated rotation. Similarly, projection for the cartilaginous and bony dorsum was within 1.0±0.8 and 0.8±0.7mm of the simulation, respectively. Conclusion: Virtual simulation is useful in defining aesthetic goals preoperatively, but the potential clinical value extends beyond this. 3D printed rhinoplasty guides extend the simulation’s utility to decision-making intraoperatively. This technology offers a novel medium for anatomic reference, which may improve adherence to desired aesthetic goals. Level of Evidence V: This journal requires that authors assign a level of evidence to each article. For a full description of these Evidence-Based Medicine Ratings, please refer to Table of Contents or online Instructions to Authors www.springer.com/00266.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2852-2859
Number of pages8
JournalAesthetic Plastic Surgery
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2021


  • 3D simulation
  • 3D technology
  • Nasal aesthetics
  • Nasal guide
  • Rhinoplasty

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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