The “Rolled-Up Sleeve” Technique for Microvascular Venous Anastomosis in Head and Neck Reconstruction: Animal Study and Clinical Series

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Abstract

Background

Venous anastomosis is challenging especially when encountering the thin recipient vein wall in the head and neck region. The authors developed the “rolled-up sleeve” technique to solve this scenario.

Methods

An animal study was performed to access the safety and reliability of the “rolled-up sleeve” technique. This technique was performed in 53 consecutive patients during head and neck reconstruction.

Results

In the animal study, all anastomoses were patent. Histological analysis revealed neo-endothelialization over the anastomotic site. This technique was applied to 59 recipient veins: branch of internal jugular vein (27), external jugular vein (17), superficial temporal vein (9), retromandibular vein (4), facial vein (2), and internal mammary vein (2). No venous thrombosis occurred in these clinical series.

Conclusions

The “rolled-up sleeve” technique is a useful procedure that can be performed safely to deal with thin vascular walls for venous anastomoses in head and neck reconstructions.

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