Introduction To prevent postoperative pharyngocutaneous fistula (PCF) after total (pharyngo)laryngectomy, simultaneous coverage of pharyngeal anastomosis with vascularised flaps such as pectoralis major muscle, anterolateral thigh or radial forearm, has been reported to be effective. As an alternative to the invasive methods using distant flaps, we used the infrahyoid myofascial flap (IHMFF), which was harvested from the same operation field of (pharyngo)laryngectomy, for covering the site of pharyngeal anastomosis. Herein, we describe the safety and effectiveness of our minimally invasive method for preventing PCF. Methods Eleven patients who were at a high risk of developing PCF due to previous chemoradiotherapy underwent simultaneous coverage of pharyngeal anastomosis with IHMFF after total (pharyngo)laryngectomy. The incidence of PCF and the rate of major fistula requiring surgical closure were determined, and the results were compared with the control group (23 patients without IHMFF cover after laryngectomy). Results PCF developed in 2 of the 11 patients (18.2%). The fistulae of these two patients were closed conservatively and did not require additional surgery. PCF developed in 6 of 23 patients (26.1%) in patients without IHMFF cover. All the six patients with fistula required additional closure surgery. The incidence of PCF did not differ in patients with or without IHMFF cover (Fisher's exact probability test; p = 0.939, NS). However, the rate of major PCF requiring surgical closure was significantly lower in patients with IHMFF cover (Fisher's exact probability test; p = 0.036 <0.05). Conclusions For (pharyngo)laryngectomy patients, IHMFF cover is a minimally invasive method that can prevent major PCF.
|Number of pages||6|
|Journal||Journal of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgery|
|Publication status||Published - Jul 2013|
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