Journal of Reconstructive Microsurgery

Published by Georg Thieme Verlag
Online ISSN: 1098-8947
Publications
Article
Surgical dogma and objective data support the relationship between increased operative times and perioperative complications. However, there has been no large-scale, multi-institutional study that evaluates the impact of increased anesthesia duration on microvascular free tissue transfer. The National Surgical Quality Improvement Program (NSQIP) database was retrospectively reviewed to identify all free-flap patients between 2006 and 2011. Included patients were subdivided into quintiles of anesthesia time. Univariate and multivariate analyses were performed to assess its impact on 30-day postoperative complications. The mean anesthesia duration for all patients was 603 ± 222 minutes. In univariate analysis, 30-day overall/medical complications, reoperation, and free flap loss demonstrated statistically significant increases as anesthesia duration increased (p < 0.05). However, in multivariate analyses, these trends and significances were abolished, with exception of the utilization of postoperative transfusions. Of interest, increasing anesthesia duration did not predict flap failure on multivariate analysis. We found that increased anesthesia time correlates with increased postoperative transfusions in free flap patients. As a result, limiting blood loss and avoiding prolonged anesthesia times should be goals for the microvascular surgeon. This is the largest multidisciplinary study to investigate the ongoing debate that longer anesthesia times impart greater risk.
 
Article
Fructose 1, 6 diphosphate (FDP), a metabolic intermediate, provides an alternative mechanism to circumvent the rate-limiting step in the Kreb's cycle. This agent has been observed to prevent the effects of ischemia on heart tissue and kidney function and the effects of endotoxic shock. It has been shown conclusively to minimize the adverse effects of ischemia-reperfusion injury in experimental pedicled skin flaps in animals. The present study was done to evaluate the effect of intra-arterial administration of FDP on salvage of ischemic microvascular transfer of gracilis muscle flaps in rats, with the premise that it might prolong the ischemia time of muscle flaps at room temperature, thus increasing chances of flap survival. Irrigation with FDP did not change the quantitative survival of the flaps, but there was qualitative improvement on histologic evaluation and DNA analysis. Decreased inflammatory damage and DNA fragmentation were seen at the 2.5-hr period. Histologic staining for mitochondrial oxygenation in gracilis muscle also showed increased uptake in the FDP-treated group vs. control at the 2.5-hr ischemia period. Further experiments with different modes of FDP administration should be carried out to identify more effective means of amelioration of flap ischemia.
 
Article
Few studies have examined the cost-effectiveness of microsurgery, and little is known about the cost-effectiveness of flap monitoring. We studied the costs related to microsurgery during 2004 to 2006 in Kuopio University Hospital. A total of 99 patients were reconstructed with 109 flaps. Primary success was achieved in 64% of cases. Reoperation for anastomosis was conducted in 25% and for other surgical complications in 27%. The intended result was achieved in 94% of cases. The mean total cost of hospital care was 20,000 euro in head and neck cancer surgery, 15,500 euro in defects of the lower extremities, and 9200 euro in breast reconstruction. The costs were greatly influenced by surgical complications (i.e., if the primary reconstruction failed, then the secondary microvascular flap almost doubled the expense involved; mean expenses per case 27,900 euro). Microdialysis was used in flap monitoring with an additional cost of 535 euro per patient. We found that microdialysis provided an early diagnosis of perfusion failure and helped to save the flap. It was estimated that if one or two flaps per year are saved due to more effective monitoring, then the extra costs of using microdialysis are covered.
 
Article
Background: Functional outcomes and quality-of-life measures following salvage reconstruction of composite Achilles/posterior leg defects are limited. We present our experience with combined Achilles defect reconstruction utilizing free tissue transfer with vascularized neotendon constructs. Methods: Between 2011 and 2012, six patients underwent vascularized reconstruction of complex Achilles defects by a single surgeon. Demographic and functional data were collected for each patient. Subjective evaluation and quality-of-life measures were obtained preoperatively and postoperatively using American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Score (AOFAS) Ankle-Hindfoot and SF-36 scores. Early and late complications were noted for each case. Results: All defects were reconstructed utilizing vascularized composite free tissue from the thigh. Average soft tissue defect was 76.7 cm(2) (range, 40-90 cm2) with a tendon gap of 7.8 cm (range, 5-10 cm). Mean follow-up was 17 months (range, 15-23 months). Flap survival was 100%. Overall range of motion of the reconstructed side was 82% of the unaffected side (48.2 degrees vs. 59 degrees, p = 0.004). Average percent increase in AOFAS and SF-36 scores were 71% (54 vs. 93, p = 0.0005) and 22% (86 vs. 104, p = 0.003), respectively. Operative revision was required for two patients with delayed-onset soft tissue infections and one donor site hematoma. Distal flap ischemia was managed with hyperbaric oxygen therapy in one patient. Functional and esthetic outcomes were judged good to excellent by all patients. Conclusions: Free tissue transfer with vascularized tendon reconstruction is a viable option for combined Achilles tendon/posterior leg defects, as both functional and quality-of-life measures appeared to be significantly improved at 1-year follow-up.
 
Article
The authors present a late follow-up of a pediatric case originally reported in the Journal, involving a newborn with a left gastroschisis, exposure of the stomach, jejunum, and left colon. Subsequent to placement of silicone mesh, the child developed a nosocomial infection, which led to necrosis of the skin, subcutaneous tissue, and muscle. Post infection control, the abdominal viscera were covered with only skin and subcutaneous tissue. At 13 months, the abdominal-wall defect was reconstructed with a free latissimus dorsi microneurovascular flap. A current late follow-up at 9.5 years demonstrates mean normal growth, good abdominal-wall resistance and contraction, and caudal scar migration, with little visibility.
 
Article
Free flaps are used increasingly in reconstructive surgery. However, many patients lack a satisfactory recipient vessel near the defect because of radiotherapy, post-traumatic infection, or treatment for recurrent tumor. We usually use a venous graft in such cases, but when both long arterial and venous segments are needed, we use the gastroepiploic vessels because they include extensive, viable arterial and venous segments. Between 1998 and 2006, we used gastroepiploic vessels as grafts in the 13 cases analyzed here. All defects lacked satisfactory recipient vessels nearby. Patients included 10 men and 3 women; mean age was 51.2 years (range, 14 to 82 years). Demographic and clinical background, results, and complications were analyzed retrospectively. Mean length of gastroepiploic vessels was 13.3 cm (range, 10 to 17 cm). All outcomes were satisfactory. A complication, abdominal wound infection secondary to harvesting of the gastroepiploic vessels, occurred in one case. Although the number of gastroepiploic vessels used as grafts analyzed here is relatively small, this experience confirms their clinical usefulness.
 
Article
Hepatic artery (HA) reconstruction is a crucial step in living donor liver transplantation (LDLT). However, many important aspects specific to this challenging step are still inadequately documented. From August 2001 through March 2007, we performed a total of 133 cases of LDLT at Dar El-Fouad Hospital. The magnifying loupe was used for performing microanastomoses in the first 31 cases, and the operating microscope was used for 98 cases. There were 128 adult and five pediatric patients. One hundred twenty-five patients received right lobe grafts, and seven patients received left lobe grafts. One patient died intraoperatively and was excluded from analysis. Arterial complications occurred in four patients of the first group (4/30, 13%) in the form of early thrombosis. One patient underwent successful interventional thromboembolectomy, two patients underwent surgical reexploration with revision of anastomoses; these three patients survived. The fourth patient died from fulminant liver failure. Regarding the second group, all arterial anastomoses were patent after reconstruction. Signal problems occurred in the form of intraoperative intermittent flow and postoperative no diastole phenomenon. Our overall arterial complication rate was 4.5%; however, we lost only one patient due to HA thrombosis (0.8%). Microsurgical reconstruction of the HA carries its own challenges. The use of operating microscope reduces the risk of complications, and aggressive interference including salvage surgery maximizes the success of HA reconstruction.
 
Article
A study was conducted to compare the regeneration across 1.4-cm peroneal nerve gaps in rats, repaired with sutured autografts or with artificial nerve grafts. The artificial models were composed of a biodegradable passive conduit made of glycolide trimethylene carbonate, filled with either phosphate-buffered saline or a collagen extracellular matrix. Functional recovery was evaluated by walking track analysis throughout the experiment. After 9 months, the nerves were analyzed by electrophysiology and by qualitative and quantitative histology. Walking track analysis demonstrated the three repair methods to provide statistically equivalent recovery, except at day 195 post-engraftment, when the collagen-filled conduit was superior to the saline-filled conduit. Electrophysiologically, the autograft was superior to the collagen-filled conduit, while the collagen- and saline-filled conduits were equivalent. Quantitative histology demonstrated that normal intact nerve had larger mean myelinated axonal diameters but an equal number of axons to the three repair methods, and that the repair methods were statistically equivalent. While the repair methods had similar histologic and functional outcomes, combined standardized scoring demonstrated that the autograft was superior to the statistically-equivalent entubulation repairs. A collagen gel may serve as an ideal matrix in which to suspend neurotrop(h)ic factors or cells.
 
Article
Over the last eight years, the authors analyzed obstructive lymphedema of a unilateral upper extremity in a total of 27 females, comparing the use of supramicrosurgical lymphaticovenule anastomoses and/or conservative treatment. The most common cause of edema was mastectomy, with or without subsequent radiation therapy for breast cancer. As an objective assessment of the extent of edema, the circumferences of the affected and opposite normal forearms were measured at 10 cm below the olecranon of the arm. Twelve of these patients received continual bandaging. In these patients, the average excess circumference of the affected arm was 6.4 cm over that of the normal forearm; the average duration of edema before treatment was 3.5 years; the average period for conservative treatment was 10.6 months; and the average decrease in circumference was 0.8 cm (11.7 percent of the preoperative excess). Twelve patients underwent surgery and postoperative continual bandaging. In these patients, the average excess circumference was 8.9 cm; the average duration of edema before surgery was 8.2 years; the average follow-up after surgery was 2.2 years; and the average decrease in circumference was 4.1 cm (47.3 percent of the preoperative excess). These results indicated that supermicrolymphaticovenular anastomoses with postoperative bandaging have a valuable place in the treatment of obstructive lymphedema.
 
Article
This report presents successful replantation of the upper lip after 17 hours of ischemia. In spite of successful venous anastomoses, the postoperative use of leeches was necessary because of severe congestion. However, sensory and functional recovery was excellent.
 
Article
Seventeen patients who underwent soft-tissue reconstruction of various anatomic regions of the foot and ankle, using the radial forearm fasiocutaneous free flap, are reported. The procedures were performed between January, 1992 and December, 1998. Indications for reconstruction included diabetes and/or vascular insufficiency (four patients), soft-tissue defects (six patients), and chronic osteomyelitis (seven patients). The weight-bearing surface of the foot was involved in 16 patients. Defects ranged in size from 35 to 206 cm² (mean: 86.2 cm²). At a mean follow-up of 3.8 years, the radial forearm flap was successful in all cases (100 percent). Flap complications included superficial infection (three patients), and minor wound dehiscence at the flap-leg-skin interface (two patients). Recurrent ulceration occurred in two patients; both were diabetics with weight-bearing flaps. Donor-site complications included partial skin graft loss with tendon exposure in one patient, which healed with conservative management. Recurrent or persistent osteomyelitis was not demonstrated in any of the patients. Of the 16 patients with weight-bearing flaps, 12 were ambulatory, three had limited ambulation, and one was non-ambulatory. Three patients required modified shoes. No debulking of the transferred flaps was necessary. The radial forearm flap is one of the preferred flaps for reconstruction of moderate-sized ankle and foot defects, for weight-bearing surfaces, and in the treatment of osteomyelitic and diabetic wounds. It meets most of the anatomic prerequisites for an ideal foot coverage; it also facilitates the restoration of normal foot contour, allowing patients to wear ordinary shoes. The flap provides a durable and stable weight-bearing plantar surface during ambulation, and achieves excellent aesthetic results; when used as a neurosensory flap, it permits adequate reinnervation.
 
Article
With special reference to skeletal growth, a 17-year follow-up study of a lower-leg replantation in a four-year-old boy is reported. The patient maintained good cosmesis and function; however, foot size on the affected side was 1.5 cm smaller than the contralateral side, and leg length was 1.2 cm shorter than on the normal side. A Cybex II study disclosed that the patient had almost half-standard strength of the evertors at 30 deg/sec and of the plantar flexors at 20 and 120 deg/sec on the involved side. According to these findings on late follow-up of a replanted foot in a child, replantation in a growing child apparently has adverse influences on skeletal growth and muscle strength around the ankle joint, even when the original procedure has been carried out under almost ideal conditions.
 
Article
Otfrid Foerster (1873-1941) became a self-taught neurosurgeon during and after WW I, playing a critical role in the development of peripheral nerve reconstruction. Although best known for describing dermatomes, he published over 300 articles on the nervous system. Confronted by thousands of nerve injuries during WW I, as well as poor results and disinterest from his surgical colleagues, Foerster began performing neurolysis and tension-free nerve repairs himself under emergency conditions. He pioneered grafting motor nerve defects by expendable cutaneous nerves (e.g., sural) and performed intraplexal neurotizations and various nerve transfers, such as the pectoral, subscapular, long thoracic, and thoracodorsal nerves in brachial plexus injuries. Foerster championed rehabilitation, recognizing the potential of electrostimulation and physiotherapy to influence cortical reorganization (brain plasticity) and improve recovery after nerve injury. Foerster died from tuberculosis in 1941, leaving a rich reconstructive peripheral nerve legacy; his innovative and visionary spirit serves as a role model.
 
Some New Basic Flap Concepts Proposed by Chinese Authors 
Article
Microsurgical anatomy and clinical applications have been widely and extensively practiced throughout the mainland of China since late 1970s. During the 1980s to 1990s, Chinese surgeons and anatomists developed many new flap donor sites and modifications, most of which were published in Chinese literature. These achievements were not fully realized by the Western surgeons. In this overview, we attempt to give a brief introduction of these contributions made by the Chinese authors in the mainland. Of the new flaps first or independently described by the Chinese, most were in the limbs. These flaps can be classified into three categories. First are free flaps with a main artery trunk, such as the radial forearm flap with radial artery, the medial leg flap with posterior tibial artery, and lateral leg flap with peroneal artery. Second are reverse-flow island flaps based on distal main vascular bundles (e.g., the radial artery and venae comitantes, the ulnar, the posterior tibial, and the peroneal arteries). Third are septocutaneous perforator flaps that avoid sacrifice of the main artery trunk, which include the anterolateral thigh flap, lateral lower-leg flap, dorsoulnar flap, distally adipofascial pedicled radial forearm flap, and so on.
 
Article
Background Surgical site infections (SSIs) are a costly complication, resulting in lower patient satisfaction and higher health care expenditures. Incidence varies widely in the literature by surgery type, yet few studies focus exclusively on autologous breast reconstruction, an increasingly common surgery. The aim of this study is to identify risk factors for SSIs in free flap breast reconstruction using the National Surgical Quality Improvement Program Database (NSQIP). Methods Patients undergoing breast reconstruction with any flap type were identified by Current Procedural Terminology codes in the NSQIP database. Patients with superficial or deep SSIs within 30 days of surgery were compared with controls by univariate analysis and multivariate logistic regression across various characteristics. Results Overall, 2,899 patients undergoing autologous reconstruction were identified. Of these, 143 (4.9%) patients developed SSIs. Those who developed wound complications were more likely smokers (18.2 vs. 8.4%, p < 0.001) and diabetics (9.8 vs. 3.4%, p < 0.001) with hypertension (38.2 vs. 25.4%, p < 0.001) and pulmonary (4.5 vs. 1.3%, p = 0.01) history. SSIs occurred in patients with higher American Society of Anesthesiologists (p = 0.003) and the World Health Organization obesity (p < 0.001) classes. On multivariate regression, SSIs were significantly associated with smoking (odds ratio [OR] = 3.59, p < 0.001) and hypertension (OR = 1.86, p = 0.03). Conclusions This study demonstrates that patients who are active smokers or have hypertension are at the highest risk for SSIs. Preoperative identification and tailored postoperative management of these patients may decrease the incidence of this complication. Thieme Medical Publishers 333 Seventh Avenue, New York, NY 10001, USA.
 
Article
The efficacy of free composite tissue transfer for the treatment of chronic osteomyelitis of the leg and foot was evaluated in a retrospective study. Twenty-two patients, operated on at the American University of Beirut between January, 1992 and December, 1996, were identified. Infection involved the heel (8), ankle (1), foot (5), and tibia (8). All patients had multiple debridement and prolonged antibiotic treatment prior to presentation. The mean duration of disease was 4.8 years (range: 1 to 25 years). There were five cases of infected tibial non-union and one case of an infected tibial bone defect measuring 15 cm. Following radical debridement, microvascular free-tissue transfer was immediately performed. One latissimus dorsi and 13 rectus abdominis muscle flaps, as well as eight radial forearm fasciocutaneous flaps were used. At a mean follow-up of 3.8 years, there was one rectus abdominis free-flap failure in a Gustilo IIIC tibial fracture, which necessitated secondary amputation; there was no evidence of recurrence of osteomyelitis in the remaining 21 patients during the study period. The patients with tibial nonunion and bone defect healed following resection and bone transport utilizing a callus distraction technique. The results show that free-tissue transfer is a safe and viable treatment option in chronic osteomyelitis of the leg and foot. A brief discussion of the history of microvascular free-tissue transfers, as well as their value in modern reconstructive surgery, is also presented.
 
Article
Peripheral myelin protein 22 (PMP22) is a major component of the peripheral myelin sheath. The PMP22 gene is located on chromosome 17p11.2, and defects in PMP22 gene have been implicated in several common inherited peripheral neuropathies. Hereditary neuropathy with liability to pressure palsies (HNPP), Charcot-Marie Tooth disease type 1A (CMT1A), Dejerine-Sottas syndrome, and congenital hypomyelinating neuropathy are all associated with defects in PMP22 gene. The disease phenotypes mirror the range of expression of PMP22 due to the corresponding genetic defect. HNPP, characterized by a milder recurrent episodic focal demyelinating neuropathy, is attributed to a deletion leading to PMP22 underexpression. On the other end of the spectrum, CMT1A leads to a more uniform demyelination and axonal loss, resulting in severe progressive distal weakness and paresthesias; it is due to a duplication at 17p11.2 leading to PMP22 overexpression. Additional point mutations result in varying phenotypes due to dysfunction of the resultant PMP22 protein. All inherited neuropathies are diagnosed with a combination of physical findings on examination, electromyography, sural nerve biopsies, and genetic testing. Treatment and management of these disorders differ depending on the underlying genetic defect, nerves involved, and resulting functional impairments. A review of current literature elucidates clinical, microsurgical implications, and management of patients with PMP22-related neuropathy.
 
Article
Function is the single most important determinant in the assessment of the results of extremity replantations. Accordingly, the indications for extremity replantations are based on the prediction of sustained satisfactory functional outcome. There are limited reports in the literature regarding replantations of major segments of lower extremities and, particularly, long-term results of those surgeries. However, this analysis is extremely important in refinement of indications for major limb replantations. In this article, evaluation of a patient 23 years after simultaneous replantation of both lower legs is presented.
 
Article
Microvascular free tissue transfer has gained world-wide acceptance as a means of reconstructing post-oncologic surgical defects in the head and neck region. Since 1977, the authors have introduced this reconstructive procedure to head and neck reconstruction after cancer ablation, and a total of 2372 free flaps were transferred in 2301 patients during a period of over 23 years. The most frequently used flap was the rectus abdominis flap (784 flaps: 33.1 percent), followed by the jejunum (644 flaps: 27.2 percent) and the forearm flap (384 flaps: 16.2 percent). In the reported series, total and partial flap necrosis accounted for 4.2 percent and 2.5 percent of cases, respectively. There was a significant statistical difference ( p < 0.05) in complete flap survival rate between immediate and secondary reconstruction cases. The authors believe that the above-mentioned three flaps have been a major part of the armamentarium for head and neck reconstruction because of a lower rate of flap necrosis, compared to other flaps.
 
Article
A seven-year-old-boy received a digit replantation after 26 hours of warm ischemia and showed good recovery of motor and sensory functions. In the case reported, replantation was performed after a much longer ischemic time than had been considered an indication for the procedure in previous reports. Successful replantation and revascularization can thus be achieved, even in cases of extensive warm ischemia.
 
Article
A 2300-g pre-term neonate with severe hyaline membrane disease experienced right forearm and hand ischemia following a brachial arterial line insertion. Limb salvage was achieved through combined microsurgical exploration and thrombectomy of the brachial and radial arteries, with postoperative regional infusion of tissue plasminogen activator (TPA) through the distal radial artery for 48 hr, to dissolve a thrombus within the small vessels of the hand. This report advocates combined surgical and regional thrombolytic therapy with tissue plasminogen activator as management for neonatal arterial thrombosis and limb ischemia.
 
Article
From August 1996 to June 2000, 33 free thoracoumbilical flaps were transferred to reconstruct a variety of soft-tissue defects. The size of the flaps ranged from 10 to 40 cm in length and 8 to 25 cm in width. The blood supply to the skin island came from the largest periumbilical perforator of the deep inferior epigastric vessels. The main indications were complex extremity trauma or soft-tissue tumor resection with extensive skin loss, either acute or postprimary. The overall success rate was 100 percent (33/33). The donor area was closed directly in 10- to 12-cm-wide flaps, leaving an inconspicuous scar. Larger flaps required skin grafting. After a 2-year follow-up, all flaps have healed uneventfully and donor abdominal morbidity is minimal.
 
Article
Donor-site morbidity in serratus anterior free-tissue transfers is investigated in 34 consecutive cases. Nineteen lower-extremity reconstructions and 15 facial reconstructions were retrospectively analyzed. Office and hospital charts were reviewed, and patients were given a follow-up questionnaire. The mean operative time was 6.3 hr and the mean estimated blood loss was 441 cc. Transfusion was required in 24 percent of cases. The early complication rate was 21 percent consisting of 6 percent hematomas and 15 percent seromas. Scar appearance, pain, numbness, and shoulder strength and mobility were acceptable. Scapular winging was detectable in 3/9 patients examined, but symptomatic in only one. The number of muscle slips harvested or whether the graft was innervated did not significantly affect this rate. Half of the patients had returned to work or school. None attributed any work disability to their donor sites. They participated in many athletic activities, including those requiring upper extremity strength and dexterity. Previously reported series are discussed, and the morbidity of this donor site is compared with reported series of other free muscle flaps. The authors find this flap useful for facial reanimation and for soft-tissue coverage with minimal bulk. Low rates of operative, perioperative, and long-term morbidity are definite advantages.
 
Article
Early experience with living donor liver transplantation (LDLT) was often complicated by hepatic artery thrombosis (HAT), a devastating complication resulting in graft loss. Attempting to reduce the incidence of HAT, we undertook a retrospective review of all children at our institution undergoing LDLT between March 2000 and August 2007, with the hepatic artery anastomosis performed by a single microvascular surgeon. Transplant surgeons performed the remainder of the operation. Patient outcomes were evaluated, including 1-year arterial and biliary complications, as well as overall survival. End-to-end hepatic arterial anastomoses were performed in 35 patients (median age: 15 months). Median posttransplant follow-up was 39 months (range: 0 to 90 months). One patient with a diffuse coagulopathy was retransplanted for HAT; this patient also demonstrated portal and hepatic vein thromboses. Biliary complications occurred in seven patients: three leaks, one cholangitis, one nonspecific dilatation, and two strictures. The median posttransplant follow-up was 39 months (range: 0 to 90 months). One- and 5-year patient survival was 94% and 94%, respectively. Very low rates of HAT can be achieved with LDLT using microsurgical techniques for hepatic arterial anastomoses. Outstanding long-term liver graft function can be achieved after LDLT when plastic surgeons and transplant surgeons collaborate together to reduce technical complications.
 
Article
-The necessity for routine angiography in evaluation of the vasculature of recipient legs prior to microsurgical free-tissue reconstruction still remains controversial. This prospective study was designed to determine the indications and limitations of angiography pertinent to this issue. The protocol consisted of palpation of dorsalis pedis and posterior tibial artery pulsation and lower-limb angiography prior to surgery, as well as intraoperative observation of the posterior tibial, anterior tibial, and peroneal arteries. Thirty-six patients were included who were treated from November, 1993 to December 1998. In five patients either the posterior tibial pulse (1), the dorsalis pedis pulse (3), or both pedal pulses, including the popliteal pulse (1) were not palpable preoperatively. These clinical findings correlated with the vascular lesion images on angiography. In two patients, pedal pulse palpation could not clearly be evaluated because of the injury. Among the 29 patients with both pedal pulses palpable, three patients angiographically presented an injury of the peroneal artery, and one patient a pseudoaneurysm of the anterior tibial artery. In none of the cases with at least one palpable pedal pulse (33), did preoperative angiography add relevant information which led to a plan change in the free-flap transfer. However, in two cases, severe scarring and fibrosis required an intraoperative change of the recipient vessel in one case, and a change of the anastomosis level and use of a vein graft, in the other case, although the angiography had demonstrated normal vascularity in both. The authors conclude that preoperative angiography is indicated only when both pedal pulses are not palpable, and that normal preoperative angiography does not guarantee the presence of vessels suitable for anastomosis.
 
Article
This study was carried out to observe the isolated effects of pedicle torsion on island skin flaps, without further damaging the pedicle. Twelve adult male Sprague-Dawley rats, weighting 240 to 300 gr, were used, and hexagonal flaps with edges measuring 1.5 cm and pedicles measuring 1 cm in length were raised in the inguinal region. The animals were divided into two groups. In Group A, flaps were re-sutured to the donor beds without any rotation. In Group B, flaps were rotated 360 degrees, applying the same degree of torsion to their pedicles before re-suturing. After 7 days, the percentage of surviving skin areas of the flaps was determined by planimetry, and transverse sections of the flaps and pedicles were taken and evaluated in terms of signs of arterial or venous insufficiency. Statistically significant differences between the groups were determined by analyses using the multiple comparisons test. Pedicle torsion in Group B did not affect flap viability, both macroscopically and microscopically. The presented study shows that 360-degree torsion applied to the pedicle of the flap in this model had no effect on flap viability.
 
Article
Oxygen-derived free radicals have been shown to play an important role in reperfusion injury. The protective effect of CV-3611, a new free radical scavenger, on reperfusion injury in an ischemic revascularized hind limb model in rats was examined. Warm ischemia (25 degrees C) was produced by vascular pedicle clamping and sustained for 0, 3, and 6 hr. Histologic and fluorochrome bone-labeling analyses demonstrated improved overall viability of osteocytes, osteoblasts, and marrow cells in the CV-3611-treated group compared to controls. The CV-3611-treated group had statistically significant improvement in the ratio of lacunae, maintained osteogenetic ability, and preserved normal growth plate architecture after 6 hr of ischemia. The control group showed local central areas of disorganization by 3 hr and complete destruction of the growth plate with early growth arrest after 6 hr of ischemia. These results indicate that administration of CV-3611 prior to reperfusion can prevent reperfusion damage in bone tissue and maintain osteogenetic ability. This technique may have clinical application for reducing the complications of prolonged ischemia to bone tissue.
 
Article
Many techniques for flap monitoring following free tissue transfer have been described; however, there is little evidence that any of these techniques allow for greater rates of flap salvage over clinical monitoring alone. We sought to compare three established monitoring techniques across three experienced microsurgical centers in a comparable cohort of patients. A retrospective, matched cohort study of 398 consecutive free flaps in 347 patients undergoing autologous breast reconstruction was undertaken across three institutions during the same 3-year period, with a single form of postoperative monitoring used at each institution: clinical monitoring alone, the Cook-Swartz implantable Doppler probe, or microdialysis. Both objective and subjective measures of efficacy were assessed. Clinical monitoring alone, the implantable Doppler probe, and microdialysis showed statistically similar rates of flap salvage. False-negative rates were also statistically similar (only seen in the clinically monitored group). However, there was a statistically significant increase in false-positive alarms causing needless take-backs to theater in the microdialysis and implantable Doppler arms, P < 0.001. This study did not find any technique superior to clinical monitoring alone. New monitoring technologies should be compared objectively with clinical monitoring as the current standard in postoperative flap monitoring.
 
Article
In this study, the patency rates, microscopic characteristics, and intraluminal dimensions of end-to-side anastomoses in the dog were compared with those of a conventional interrupted suturing technique, using the 3M precise microvascular anastomotic system. The anastomoses included end-to-side repairs of the saphenous artery to the femoral artery, as well as the saphenous vein to the femoral vein. The patency and microscopic characteristics of the two techniques were similar, but the mechanical coupling system required much less time than the suture technique to complete the vascular anastomosis.
 
Top-cited authors
Warren M Rozen
  • Peninsula Health
Isao Koshima
  • Hiroshima University
Jonas Nelson
  • Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
Petros Konofaos
  • The University of Tennessee Health Science Center
Gemma Pons
  • Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau