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Article
June 1993

Finite Element Analysis of Airflow in the Nasal Valve

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Surgery, St Catherine's Hospital, Kenosha, Wis (Dr Tarabichi); and the Department of Otolaryngology, McGill University and Montreal (Canada) General Hospital (Dr Fanous).

Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1993;119(6):638-642. doi:10.1001/archotol.1993.01880180054010
Abstract

• We digitized the outline of the nasal cavity from images obtained after applying contrast material to the nose. A computer-aided simulation of flow was undertaken in the sagittal plane in the anterior nasal cavity. Previous work on the nasal valve was reviewed. Our results showed that the nasal valve is an oblique structure bounded laterally by the caudal end of the upper lateral cartilage, medially by the septum, and ventrally by the inferior rim of the piriform aperture. We found that this rim, projecting from the floor of the nose, produces an uneven distribution of airflow through the valve with most of the flow occurring in the ventral segment. Removal of this rim should result in a more even distribution of flow across the valve.

(Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1993;119:638-642)

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