Treatment possibilities of reverse-flow sural flap in covering the defects of lower extremities
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Soft tissue defects of the lower extremity pose an important surgical challenge, often because of inviability of primary covering. Therapeutic modalities of choice comprise of local perforator flaps, as well as of free flaps created with the use of microsurgical skills. However, these methods cannot be applied in patients with important comorbidities, and it is in such cases where the reverse sural flap proves to be the best solution.The aim of the study was to present the results of treating lower extremity defects with various modifications of the reverse sural flap.Material and methods. Sixteen patients, males aged 17-56 years, were operated on from 2007 to 2013. Diabetes with multiple complications, disseminated atheromatosis, and extensive soft tissue trauma involving the arteries crucial for microsurgica anastomoses were the most common reason disqualifying from the free and perforator-based flap techniques.Results. All of the patients achieved very good results; in two cases distal and marginal flap necrosis was observed which, once exiced, covered with granulation, and was successfully covered with a partialthickness skin graft.Conclusions. The reverse sural flap, technically easy, offers a viable, low-risk alternative to free and perforator-based flaps.
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