Three-dimensional evaluation of important surgical landmarks of the face during aging

Ann Anat. 2020 Mar;228:151435. doi: 10.1016/j.aanat.2019.151435. Epub 2019 Oct 31.


Background: One surgical objective is creating an aesthetically satisfying outcome. The morbidity increases with age. Standard values for areas of the face, which are frequently surgically treated, are needed for the surgeon.

Methods: 240 Caucasians aged 21-65 were divided into six subgroups by gender and age. They were scanned by a three-dimensional (3D) scanner. Distances and angles in faces between landmarks were evaluated.

Results: During aging, the relation of the eye's width to the eye's height became significantly smaller (M: p=0.001, F: p≤0.0001). The outer contour of the nose became significantly sharper with increasing age (M: p=0.001, F: p=0.0021). Seen from caudal, the nose formed an isosceles triangle with the base between the left and right alar curvature and the base had an average length of 31.35mm±2.97mm. The leg of this triangle had an average length of 33.67mm±2.09mm. The nose got longer and wider during aging; the age-dependent changes between the different groups of males (p≤0.0001) and the difference between females and males were significant (p≤0.0001). The thickness of the nasal wings remained the same size during a lifetime. Females had significantly greater heights for both lips (p≤0.0001, p=0.027). In males and females, the heights decreased with increasing age.

Conclusion: This study provided a database of measurements of parts of the face, especially those parts that can underlie various surgical treatments.

Keywords: Aging; Cephalometry; Facial surgery; Human face; Optical three-dimensional imaging.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aging / pathology*
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Bone Resorption
  • Eye / anatomy & histology
  • Face / anatomy & histology*
  • Face / surgery*
  • Facial Bones / anatomy & histology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Imaging, Three-Dimensional
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Mouth / anatomy & histology
  • Nose / anatomy & histology
  • Young Adult