The radial forearm flap as a carrier for the osteocutaneous fibula graft in mandibular reconstruction.

Department of Oral and Plastic Maxillofacial Surgery, Knappschaftskrankenhaus, Ruhr-University, Bochum, Germany.
International Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery (Impact Factor: 1.52). 01/2004; 32(6):614-8. DOI: 10.1054/ijom.2002.0395
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT According to the concept of a free flap carrier we transferred an osteocutaneous fibula graft after microanastomosis to a pedicled radial forearm flap for reconstruction of the lower face in a patient with a total occlusion of the left and a subtotal occlusion of the right common carotid artery. The fibula was osteotomized in three segments to form the new mandible, and the skin paddle was placed extraorally. An external fixation device was connected to the radial bone, and a halo frame was fixed to the skull, and the forearm was thus stabilized rigidly in a suitable position. After 2 weeks, serial occlusion of the pedicle was begun twice daily. Blood flow and haemoglobin oxygenation of the skin paddle were measured by laser Doppler flowmetry and photometry. At the 14th day of ischaemic preconditioning, the flap could tolerate 3h of occlusion. Then the carrier vessels and the forearm flap were excised. The flap survived completely based on neovascularization from the recipient site.

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