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J Plast Reconstr Aesthet Surg. 2010 Mar;63(3):e248-52. doi: 10.1016/j.bjps.2009.06.004. Epub 2009 Jul 3.

One-stage vermilion switch flap procedure for the correction of thin lips in patients with bilateral cleft lips.

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Department of Plastic Surgery, Kobe Children's Hospital, 1-1-1 Takakuradai Suma-ku, Kobe, Japan.


In this article, we describe the operative method for correction of thin lips in patients with bilateral cleft lips. Two transverse triangular flaps were designed in the lower vermilion and elevated along with the labial arteries and the surrounding tissues. These flaps were inserted into the recipient site on the upper vermilion through the subcutaneous tunnels at the oral commissure through a one-stage process; the donor site was closed directly. Two patients with bilateral cleft lip underwent this operation for thin lips, and satisfying results with less morbidity were obtained. The upper lip retained its volume postoperatively, and the donor-site scar was inconspicuous. Our method enabled both the augmentation of the upper vermilion and the reduction of the lower vermilion in a one-stage procedure.

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