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Arch Facial Plast Surg. 2006 Nov-Dec;8(6):404-9; discussion 410.

Modification of the Zitelli bilobed flap: a comparison of flap dynamics in human cadavers.

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Division of Facial Plastic Surgery, Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, University of California, San Francisco, CA 94115, USA.



To investigate the effects on overall flap dynamics of altering the length of the primary flap in the Zitelli bilobed flap procedure, because the standard Zitelli design can result in distortion of the alar margin after repair of cutaneous nasal alar defects.


Identical 1.5-cm circular cutaneous defects were made on the nasal alae and cheeks of 6 fresh human cadavers. A rectangle was inked around each cheek defect in a standardized fashion. A standard-design Zitelli bilobed flap was used to close the nasal and cheek defects on 1 side of each specimen (n = 6). The contralateral defect was closed with a modified design in which the primary flap was either 10% longer (n = 3) or 10% shorter (n = 3) than the standard primary flap as measured from the pivot point. Alar margin retraction and cheek defect distortion were measured from standardized photographs obtained before and after the repair.


The long-flap design resulted in alar retraction that was 1.33 mm less in the nasal reconstructions (P = .02) and distal defect distortion that was 2.17 mm less in the cheek reconstructions (P = .01) compared with the standard Zitelli bilobed flap. The short-flap design caused more distortion than did the standard design for both types of defect.


Lengthening the primary flap in the Zitelli bilobed flap design may reduce distal wound distortion and alar retraction in the closure of certain cutaneous defects.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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