The Chimera Flap: A Quarter Century Odyssey

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Abstract

Incredibly complicated multidimensional defects have always strained the ingenuity of the reconstructive surgeon. Secondary perhaps to vascularized composite allotransplantation as a solution to this dilemma, the compound flap has been developed to be a more useful and available alternative. Their greatest versatility has been proven by its subtype, the chimera flap. The chimera flap itself consists of multiple flaps, the latter possibly composed of bone, skin, muscle, and so on, where each part has an independent vascular supply, and each part is independent of any physical interconnection whatsoever with the other components, except where joined ultimately only to a common vascular pedicle. An appellation for this concept was first introduced a quarter century ago in this very journal, a time frame now the impetus for a recapitulation of its origin and subsequent history that proves that it has eventually withstood the test of time and has been successfully assimilated into the reconstructive repertoire.

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