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Plast Reconstr Surg. 1987 Sep;80(3):423-7.

The effect of established infection on microvascular surgery.


The success of microvascular anastomoses in the presence of staphylococcal infection was studied using rat femoral arteries. There was a spontaneous thrombosis rate of 19 percent in normal vessels that traversed the area of infection. Vessels with an anastomosis outside the area of infection had a similar thrombosis rate, but if the anastomotic site was within the infected area itself, the thrombosis rate increased to 75 percent. Inflammatory changes with subsequent fibrosis in the media and adventitia appeared responsible for the thrombosis. The intima was unaffected by the presence of infection. This study suggests that when a microvascular anastomosis is necessary in the presence of infection, the anastomosis should be placed outside the area of infection with a pedicle to traverse the infected area.

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