Clinical and imaging evaluation of Congenital Midnasal Stenosis: Congenital Midnasal Stenosis

Lirit Levi*, Liora Kornreich, Ohad Hilly, Eyal Raveh, Dror Gilony

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives: To illustrate the clinical and radiological presentation of a rare etiology of nasal obstruction in neonates, midnasal stenosis (MNS), including a comparison of nasal dimensions with those of normal infants. Methods: We retrospectively reviewed medical charts and computerized tomography (CT) imaging of neonates with nasal obstruction diagnosed as stenosis in the midnasal area in a tertiary pediatric medical center. MNS was defined clinically by inability to visualize the middle turbinate with an endoscope despite the absence of stenosis of the anterior aperture or any gross septal deviation. CT measurements of the midnasal width were taken by an experienced neuroradiologist. We compared widths between the bony inferior turbinate to the bony septum in the narrowest area of symptomatic patients, to widths in a control group of asymptomatic children. Results: Nine neonates from birth to three months old presenting with nasal obstruction, severe stertor, and blocked nasal passage at the midnasal level in endoscopic examination, were diagnosed with MNS. 6/9 had CT scans. Four had isolated unilateral stenosis, two unilateral MNS and contralateral choanal atresia, and three bilateral MNS. All patients were managed conservatively, initially with nasal saline irrigation and local steroids and topical antibiotics; Median time to resolution of symptoms was 14 days. When comparing the dimensions at the midnasal narrowest area of the stenotic group with a control group of 139 healthy children, the median bony width was 1.7 mm vs. 3.2 mm, respectively (p < 0.00001). Average dimensions according to age groups until the age of 12 months are given. Conclusion: In neonates with nasal obstruction, when choanal atresia and pyriform aperture stenosis are excluded, stenosis of the midnasal area should be considered. Most of these neonates can be managed conservatively. Level of evidence: 4.

Original languageEnglish
Article number109918
JournalInternational Journal of Pediatric Otorhinolaryngology
StatePublished - May 2020


  • CT
  • Choanal atresia
  • Congenital
  • Midnasal stenosis
  • Nasal obstruction


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