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Axial Pattern Flap Based on the Cutaneous Branch of the Superficial Temporal Artery in Dogs: An Experimental Study and Case Report

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Objective

To determine the anatomic guidelines and viability of an axial pattern flap based on the cutaneous branch of the superficial temporal artery (STA) in dogs. Application of the flap in a clinical patient is reported. Study Design

Flap viability in control and experimental groups was determined 7 days postoperatively. Animals

A total of 14 mature, mesaticephalic dogs; 1 clinical patient. Methods

The cutaneous branch of the STA and vein were incorporated in the flaps of the experimental groups (group A, n = 5 ; group B, n = 4 ) and were ligated in the control group ( n = 5 ). Flap length was extended in experimental group B. Seven days postoperatively, the length and area of tissue that remained viable in each flap was determined and compared with similar measurements performed intraoperatively. Cutaneous fluorescence was also used postoperatively to assess flap perfusion. The flap used in the clinical patient had the same dimensions as flaps developed in group A. Results

Mean survival length (± SD) of STA flaps [group A, 9.1 (0.8) cm], was significantly increased ( P < .05 ) compared with control flaps [7.0 (0.6) cm]. Percentage flap length survival (± SD) of STA flaps [group A, 91.8 (8.9)%], was significantly increased ( P < .05 ) compared with control flaps [71.6 (7.0)%]. Mean percentage area of survival (± SD) of STA flaps [group A, 93.1 (7.5)%], was significantly increased ( P < .05 ) compared with control flaps [73.5 (7.4)%]. Group B flaps had a mean survival length of 10.4 (1.1) cm, percentage flap length survival of 69.5 (4.8)%, and mean percentage area of survival of 69.1 (6.5)%. There was no positive correlation between the area of flap fluorescence at days 0, 1, and 3, and the area of flap survival. Application of the flap in a clinical patient allowed primary wound reconstruction with 100% survival. Conclusion

A flap based on the cutaneous branch of the STA may be a source of skin for reconstructive procedures of the maxillofacial region in dogs. Clinical Relevance

Knowledge of the anatomic landmarks and expected viability of a STA axial pattern flap is essential before consideration of its use as a reconstructive surgical technique.

©Copyright 1999 by The American College of Veterinary Surgeons
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: From the Department of Small Animal Clinical Sciences, and the Laboratory for Comparative Oral Research, Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine, Blacksburg, VA.

Publication date: 1999-05-01

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