Complications of double free flap and free flap combined with locoregional flap in head and neck reconstruction: A systematic review

Collin L. Chen, Joseph Zenga, Lauren T. Roland, Patrik Pipkorn

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: The purpose of this clinical review was to assess the feasibility of reconstructing complex head and neck defects with 2 or more free flaps simultaneously. Methods: A total of 38 articles were reviewed. The patient population included those who received 2 or more free flaps or a single free flap plus a locoregional flap. The primary outcome assessed was rate of complications. Results: Among double flaps, the minor complication rate was 6.96% and the major complication rate was 20.0%. In comparison, the free flap plus locoregional flap group had higher rates of minor and major complications of 30.4% and 29.5%, respectively. The median operating time was 660 minutes for double flaps and 602 minutes for free flap plus locoregional flap (P =.828). Conclusion: Compared to the single free flap plus locoregional flap, double free flaps are relatively reliable without increasing surgical complications or decreasing flap survival, while only modestly increasing operating times.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)632-646
Number of pages15
JournalHead and Neck
Volume40
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2018

Keywords

  • double flap
  • free flap
  • head and neck
  • locoregional flap
  • microvascular

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