Locoregional Use of Lateral Thoracic Artery Perforator Flap as a Propeller Flap

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Abstract

Although thoracodorsal system is a fundamental source of various flaps, lateral thoracic region has not been a popular flap donor area. There is limited data on the use of lateral intercostal artery perforator flap and lateral thoracic artery perforator flap. In this case series, lateral thoracic artery perforator flap has been used in locoregional (axilla, pectoral region, and arm) reconstruction as an island or propeller flap.

Eighteen patients have been operated on between September 2010 and January 2013. The age of the patients ranged between 16 and 68 years with a median of 38 years. A thorough chart review has been performed with preoperative and postoperative photographs. Duration of hospitalization, complication rate and long term results have been documented.

Nine patients had severe burn contracture of axilla, 7 patients had axillary hidradenitis suppurativa, 1 patient had giant neurofibroma of arm, and 1 patient had malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumor of pectoral area. Seventeen flaps survived totally, and in 1 flap, distal superficial slough of skin has been observed. No recurrence in hidradenitis or peripheral nerve sheath tumor has been observed. Donor site scar is well hidden in anatomical position. The range of motion of affected extremities returned to normal after reconstruction.

Lateral thoracic area provides a reliable flap option with a wide arc of rotation when lateral thoracic artery perforators are used.

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