Full-thickness skin graft from the groin for coverage of the radial forearm free flap donor site

University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, California, United States
American Journal of Otolaryngology (Impact Factor: 1.08). 09/2007; 28(5):325-9. DOI: 10.1016/j.amjoto.2006.10.009
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The purpose of this study is to describe the use of a full-thickness skin graft from the groin for coverage of the radial forearm free flap donor site. Our hypothesis is that the use of the full-thickness skin graft decreases morbidity and improves functional and cosmetic outcome at the skin graft donor site while also providing excellent coverage of the forearm donor site.
This study used a retrospective chart review design.
Patients undergoing radial forearm free flap reconstructions from 1995 to 2005 were included. Forty patients underwent radial forearm free flap reconstruction with closure of the forearm donor site with a full-thickness skin graft harvested from the groin. The inguinal donor site was closed primarily. Medical records including clinic notes, operative reports, and photographs were reviewed.
There was 1 minor wound dehiscence at the groin site, and there were 5 minor forearm wound dehiscences with 2 cases of tendon exposure; all dehiscences were treated conservatively with local wound care. Both the groin wound and forearm donor sites healed satisfactorily in all cases, with no impairment of function related to the skin graft. All patients expressed satisfaction with the postoperative pain, functional outcome, and cosmetic appearance related to both the skin graft and forearm donor sites.
Full-thickness skin graft from the groin for coverage of the radial forearm free flap donor site is an effective, safe alternative to the traditional split thickness skin graft.

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