Arch Craniofac Surg.  2019 Dec;20(6):370-375. 10.7181/acfs.2019.00528.

A retrospective computed tomography analysis of maxillary fractures and the clinical outcomes of their unreduced parts

  • 1Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Hallym University Sacred Heart Hospital, Hallym University College of Medicine, Anyang, Korea.
  • 2Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Hallym University Hangang Sacred Heart Hospital, Hallym University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.


Some parts of a maxillary fracture"”for example, the medial and posterior walls"”may remain unreduced because they are unapproachable or hard to deal with. This study aimed to investigate the self-healing process of unreduced maxillary membranous parts of fractures through a longitudinal computed tomography (CT) analysis of cases of unilateral facial bone injuries involving the maxillary sinus walls.
Thirty-two patients who had undergone unilateral facial bone reduction surgery involving the maxillary sinus walls without reduction of the medial and posterior walls were analyzed in this retrospective chart review. Preoperative, immediate postoperative, and 3-month postoperative CT scans were analyzed. The maxillary sinus volume was calculated and improvements in bone continuity and alignment were evaluated.
The volume of the traumatized maxillary sinuses increased after surgery, and expanded significantly by 3 months postoperatively (p< 0.05). The significant preoperative volume difference between the normal and traumatized sides (p= 0.024) resolved after surgery (p> 0.05), and this resolution was maintained at 3 months postoperatively (p > 0.05). The unreduced parts of the maxillary bone showed improved alignment and continuity (in 75.0% and 90.6% of cases, respectively), and improvements in bone alignment and bone continuity were found to be correlated using the Pearson chi-square test (p= 0.002).
Maxillary wall remodeling through self-healing occurred concomitantly with an increase in sinus volume and simultaneous improvements in bone alignment and continuity. Midfacial surgeons should be aware of the natural course of unreduced fractured medial and posterior maxillary walls in complex maxillary fractures.


Facial bones; Fractures, bone; Fracture healing; Maxillary sinus; Periosteum

MeSH Terms

Facial Bones
Fracture Healing
Fractures, Bone
Maxillary Fractures*
Maxillary Sinus
Retrospective Studies*
Tomography, X-Ray Computed
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