Bipolar Transfer of Latissimus Dorsi Myocutaneous Flap for Restoration of Elbow Flexion in Late Traumatic Brachial Plexus Injury: Evaluation of 13 Cases

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Abstract

Background

Restoration of elbow flexion following traumatic brachial plexus injury represents a great challenge to the reconstructive surgeons. Functional muscle transfers come next to the sophisticated types of nerve surgery in this area. Many transfers are well known for restoration of elbow flexion; bipolar or unipolar latissimus dorsi, triceps brachii, sternocleidomastoid, pectoralis major, and Steindler flexorplasty.

Objective

Evaluation of the outcome of bipolar transfer of latissimus dorsi myocutaneous flap when used to restore elbow flexion in late traumatic brachial plexus injury.

Patients and Methods

Thirteen patients were included in this case series with careful evaluation both preoperatively and postoperatively both clinically and using electromyography.

Results

Almost 84.6% of patients (11 of 13) developed G3–4 on the Medical Research Council grading with relatively minimal both donor-site and recipient-site morbidity.

Conclusions

Bipolar transfer of latissimus dorsi myocutaneous flap is a reliable method for restoration of elbow flexion in patients suffering from late sequelae of traumatic brachial plexus injury.

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