Panfacial Fractures: Analysis of 33 Cases Treated Late

Dongmei He, Yi Zhang, Edward Ellis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

52 Scopus citations


Purpose: The aim of this retrospective study was to analyze the characteristics of delayed panfacial fractures and evaluate treatment results. Patients and Methods: Thirty-three patients with delayed panfacial fractures were treated in the Maxillofacial Trauma Center of Peking University, School and Hospital of Stomatology between 1998 and 2004. Each patient was examined by computed tomography (CT) scans before operation. For those who had no severe opening restriction, dental impressions were taken to fabricate dental casts. For those with severely comminuted fractures, 3-dimensional (3D) models of the facial skeleton were used. Re-establishing the continuity of the mandible was the first step and then used as a platform to reconstruct the maxillary fractures via maxillomandibular fixation after Le Fort I osteotomy. The third step was to restore the mid- and upper-facial width and projection by coronal approach to expose the zygomatic complex and frontal bone/sinus and/or naso-orbito-ethmoid (NOE) fractures. Results: There were 3 types of mandibular fractures that affected the treatment plan: 1) type I, mandibular body/symphysis fracture(s) (17/33, 51.52%); 2) type II, mandibular angle and/or condylar fracture(s) (6/33, 18.18%); and 3) type III, both mandibular body/symphysis and angle/condylar fractures (10/33, 30.30%). Fourteen cases were associated with NOE fractures (42.42%) and 3 cases had frontal sinus fractures (9.1%). Twelve cases had enophthalmos (36.36%) and 3 lost 1 eyeball. The order of treatment was dependent on the mandibular fracture type. For type I fractures, reconstructing the mandibular arch was the first step. For type II fractures, repairing the angle, ascending rami, and condylar areas was the first step. For type III fractures, when both mandibular height and arch were disrupted, freeing the malunited angle or condyle was the first step before restoring the mandibular arch form. Reconstruction of the mandibular height and projection was then carried out. For all 3 types, the second step was to restore the mid- and upper facial width and projection by reducing the zygomatic complex and frontal bone/sinus or NOE fractures. Maxillary fixation across the Le Fort I level was the last step. Le Fort I osteotomy was used for all 33 cases. Bone grafts and soft tissue suspension also were used. Twenty-one cases (63.64%) had good results, 7 (21.21%) cases were acceptable, and 5 (15.15%) were not good. There were 7 cases (21.21%) that still had soft tissue problems that needed secondary operations. Conclusions: Reconstruction of the mandible first with Le Fort I osteotomy is a good way to treat delayed panfacial fractures. Computed tomography and 3D CT, model surgery, and occasionally 3D models are necessary aids for diagnosis and treatment. Soft tissue problems, including lacerations and asymmetries, were often the factors that caused an unfavorable outcome.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2459-2465
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2007
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oral Surgery
  • Surgery
  • Otorhinolaryngology


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