Combined use of anterolateral thigh flap and pharyngeal flap for reconstruction of extensive soft-palate defects

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Abstract

Background:

Functional reconstruction of extensive soft-palate defects is challenging for microsurgeons. The versatility of the combination of a free anterolateral thigh flap and a superiorly based pharyngeal flap for oncologic soft-palate reconstruction was investigated.

Methods:

The combination of flaps was used for immediate reconstruction after total or subtotal resection of the soft palate in five consecutive patients from 2006 to 2011.

Results:

All flaps survived completely. Palatal fistula and miniplate infection each developed in one patient but healed conservatively. Follow-up period ranged from 21 to 66 months. All patients tolerated a regular diet without significant aspiration or nasal regurgitation. Speech intelligibility was excellent in all patients, and none required a palatal prosthesis.

Conclusions:

The combination of an anterolateral thigh flap and a superiorly based pharyngeal flap is a versatile option for reconstructing extensive soft-plate defects. This method is simple and achieves reproducible results with limited donor-site morbidity. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Microsurgery 36:291–296, 2016.

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