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Minimally invasive harvesting of rectus abdominis myofascial flap in the cadaver and porcine models.

Friedlander LD, et al. Plast Reconstr Surg. 1996.


The rectus abdominis muscle has been used in reconstructive surgery as a superiorly and an inferiorly based pedicle flap as well as free flap. Since flap necrosis is unusual, the primary morbidity of the harvesting is donor-site complications, including infections, seromas, poor cosmesis, and hernias. Minimally invasive surgery has been used in abdominal, thoracic, and urologic surgeries with favorable results. To date, flap harvesting and other soft-tissue surgeries have been considered inaccessible to minimally invasive surgery based on existing techniques. We demonstrate in the (5) cadaver and (5) porcine models the technique of endoscopic harvesting of a superiorly based vertical myofascial pedicle flap. Without insufflation, we create a soft-tissue space to operate within using external skin traction. We demonstrate that this flap harvesting can be performed without the obligatory large skin incision. Donor-site complications may be decreased with less tissue disruption. In our cadaver models, we have tried using the rectus without the anterior fascia based on its superior pedicle for breast reconstruction. For this purpose, we use the endoscissors with cautery to create a tunnel up on the chest wall. The muscle based on its superior pedicle could be rotated up on the chest wall subcutaneously, allowing primary closure of the anterior sheath using the endostapler. If the anterior sheath is sacrificed or cannot be closed primarily, mesh can be used to create a reinforcing layer stapled to the edges of fascia and midline. Endoscopic surgery offers an excellent alternative for soft-tissue reconstruction without compromising the results.


8532780 [Indexed for MEDLINE]

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