Are postoperative drains necessary with the limberg flap for treatment of pilonidal sinus?

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Different methods for managing pilonidal sinus have been described in the literature. Our purpose was to evaluate the influence of postoperative drainage in Limberg flaps.


Forty patients with pilonidal sinus undergoing radical excision and reconstruction with Limberg flap between 1994 and 1996 were evaluated prospectively. After patients were assigned randomly to the two groups, the effects of drains were studied statistically in terms of wound complications, hospital stay, and recurrence rate.


Except for two minor transient wound dehiscences, in all cases primary healing was achieved. Early wound complication rate was 7.5 percent and recurrence rate was 2.5 percent for both groups. There was no significant difference between the groups in early wound complications (P>0.05). The length of hospital stay was significantly longer in the drainage group (P<0.001).


We conclude that Limberg flaps with no drains in place will result in shorter hospital stays without deleteriously affecting the surgical results of wide excision and primary closure with well-vascularized tissue.

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