Simultaneous Surgical Treatment for Smile Dysfunction and Lagophthalmos Involving a Dual Latissimus Dorsi Flap

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Paralytic lagophthalmos and smile dysfunction are serious complications of facial paralysis and various reconstructive procedures have been developed to treat them. Among these procedures, there is no doubt that dynamic procedures are more effective than static ones. The 1-stage simultaneous surgical treatment of these 2 dysfunctions with a dynamic procedure involving a single muscle would be ideal, but no such methods have been reported. In this article, we present a 1-stage method for the simultaneous surgical treatment involving the use of a dual latissimus dorsi muscle flap. In this method, 2 muscle flaps based on the descending and transverse branches of the thoracodorsal vessels are transferred to the face. The descending and transverse branches of the thoracodorsal nerve are sutured to separate branches of the masseteric nerve. Using this method, complete eyelid closure during strong clenching and voluntary smiling during weak clenching without eyelid closure were achieved. Although our method does not result in spontaneous smiling, we believe that it is a good option for some patients with long-standing facial paralysis.

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