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Tissue expansion 1984-1999: a 15-year review.

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Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, University Hospital MAS, Malmö, Sweden.


We assessed all patients who underwent tissue expansion, excluding breast reconstructions, between 1984 and 1999. A total of 237 patients had 257 expansions, normally for distorted scars, 202 of 257 cases (79%). Their mean age was 27 (range 7-67) years, most being women, 149 of 237 (63%). The mean duration of expansion was 16 weeks (range 0.4-118). The most common site was the skull (61/257). Prophylactic antibiotics were used in 224 of 257 (86%) at the time of expander insertion and 147 of 257 (56%) at the removal of the expander. Sixty-two patients (24%) had minor complications and 34 (13%) had major complications. Tissue expansion can be used with a currently acceptable failure rate though we continue to strive to lower this further.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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