[Clinical application of free vascularized flaps based on the wrist cutaneous branch of ulnar artery in repairing finger soft tissue defect].

Zhongguo gu shang = China journal of orthopaedics and traumatology

PubMedID: 25571664

Tang YH, Zeng LR, Huang ZM, Yue ZS, Xu CD, Xin DW. [Clinical application of free vascularized flaps based on the wrist cutaneous branch of ulnar artery in repairing finger soft tissue defect]. Zhongguo Gu Shang. 2014;27(9):778-80.
OBJECTIVE
To investigate the methods and clinical effects of repairing finger soft tissue defect with free vascularized flaps based on the wrist cutaneous branch of ulnar artery.

METHODS
From February 2010 to December 2012, 16 patients with finger soft tissue defects were repaired by free vascularized flaps based on the wrist cutaneous branch of ulnar artery, including 10 males and 6 females with an average age of 38.2 years old ranging from 18 to 52 years. Among them, 5 cases caused by hot crush injury, 8 cases caused by machine crush injury, 3 cases caused by firecracker burst injury. The defect area varied from 1.3 cm x 2.3 cm to 2.6 cm x 5.0 cm. The flap area varied from 1.5 cm x 2.5 cm to 2.8 cm x 5.2 cm. The appearance and two-point discrimination of flap were observed after operation.

RESULTS
All flaps survived and wounds healed primarily. No wound infection and skin necrosis were found in donor site and recipient site. Among repair methods, direct suture in forearm donor site had 11 cases and skin graft had 5 cases. All patients were followed up from 6 to 24 months with an average of 10.8 months. The appearance of flap was not fat or clumsy, texture and color were similar to the recipient site, the sensation were good, two-point discrimination was 6 to 9 mm. The appearance of donor site were well complicated with mild scarring without dysfunction obviously.

CONCLUSION
The free vascularized flaps based on the wrist cutaneous branch of ulnar artery has the advantages of vascular anatomy constant,thickness moderate and carry sensory nerves, etc, which is effective way to repair finger soft tissue defects.