Hemisoleus muscle flap in the reconstruction of exposed bones in the lower limb

MCh(Plast Surg), Associate Professor, Post-Graduate Department of Burns, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Jawaharlal Nehru Medical College, Aligarh Muslim University, India.
Journal of Wound Care (Impact Factor: 1.07). 11/2013; 22(11):635-42. DOI: 10.12968/jowc.2013.22.11.635
Source: PubMed


Objectives: To evaluate the efficacy of soleus muscle flap for covering complex defects of the middle and lower leg. The study also outlines functional gain after the reconstructive procedure, the donor site morbidity and the technical details of the operative procedure. Method: This prospective study consists of a total of 40 patients with middle and lower third defects with exposed bone present in the leg. In all cases, a proximally-based hemisoleus flap was used. All patients were between 15-65 years of age. Depending upon the position of the defect and ease of rotation, either the medial or lateral hemisoleus was used to cover the defects. In 7 patients with large defects, both the hemi-gastrocnemius and hemisoleus flap were used. Results: Most of the patients studied (52.5%) had defects in the middle third of their leg. A further 12(30%) patients had defects over the upper part of the lower third of the leg and 7(17.5%) cases involved large defects exposing bones comprising both the middle and lower thirds of the leg. All the flaps survived well except 5 which developed partial skin graft loss, and 1 where complete flap loss was observed. Out of 5 patients who developed partial graft loss, 3 patients achieved complete healing by regular dressings and 2 required regrafting. The patient who developed complete flap loss required below knee amputation. No donor site morbidity was observed, except minimal depression in the posterior leg. Conclusion: Due to a high degree of reliability, versatility, minimal donor site morbidity, less operating time, low cost and good functional gain, this procedure is highly suitable for the treatment of complex middle and lower leg defects. Declaration of interest: There were no external sources of funding for this study. The authors have no conflicts of interest to declare.

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