This instrument is designed to be used as a substitute for the knife or scissors in cases of uncomplicated deviation of the cartilaginous septum. It cuts out of the cartilaginous portion of the septum a more or less tongue-shaped flap, and it accomplishes with a single incision at least as much as is done in the Asch operation with two separate incisions. Thus is overcome the necessity of removing one set of scissors to substitute another, which may prove a serious drawback in case one is operating on a nervous patient under a local anesthetic.
In the Asch operation, the result of the incisions is to create four small, triangular segments with their points in apposition, which means that we have four possible points of sloughing. With the septotome but a single flap is cut, and that having what many rhinologists consider the ideal shape of the flap for this
WELLS WA. A NEW SEPTOTOME.. JAMA. 1905;XLV(8):535. doi:10.1001/jama.1905.52510080033005
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