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Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1992 Dec;107(6 Pt 1):721-6.

The versatile melolabial flap.

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  • 1Department of Surgery, University Hospital, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.


The melolabial flap is a versatile technique for reconstruction of defects of the central face. Variations of this flap may be used to reconstruct the lower eyelids, the nose, the upper and lower lip, chin, and malar regions. Regional anatomy, indications, technical considerations, and avoidance of complications are discussed on the basis of 10 bilateral cadaver dissections of the melolabial area, in conjunction with 70 reconstructive cases that used this flap. Statistical analysis of the results reveals that flap viability is compromised by previous radiation and smoking. Consequently, alternate methods of reconstruction of the central face should be used in patients who have a history of these problems.

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