Reconstruction of a particular defect is an highly complex problem, that is reflected in the number and variety of techniques proposed. This is particularly true for reconstruction of mandibular segment defects usually together with the need to repair oro-pharnygeal soft tissues defects of various size. The high rate of successes that can be obtained today using microvascular reconstruction techniques explains the reason why bone free flaps have progressively become the "gold standard" used as benchmark for all other forms of primary mandibular reconstruction. However, for selected patients (elderly patients or individuals in poor general health; the presence of lateral oro-mandibular defects or soft tissue defects significantly exceeding the bone defect) the association of non-osseous microvascular free flaps (such as forearm skin flaps or miocutaneous free flaps of the abdominal rectus muscle) with a titanium mandibular reconstruction plate (THORP) can prove a valid alternative. Indeed, in these cases reconstruction of choice would be the association of two free flaps, one osseous and the other non osseous. The use of THORP-type mandibular reconstruction plates in repairing lateral defects increases the overall risk of complications related to the reconstruction technique which is already hindered by the risks associated with the use of microvascular free flaps. The present work starts with a retrospective evaluation of 5 years series of primary mandibular reconstruction for lateral oro-mandibular defects following oncological surgery. The role of THORP-type titanium mandibular plates, used in combination with non-osseous free flaps in the treatment of selected patients, is then described and discussed.
Primary reconstruction of lateral oromandibular defects using titanium plates (THORP) and revascularized non osseous flaps: a personal experience / POLI T; FERRARI S; BIANCHI B; SESENNA E.. - In: ACTA OTORHINOLARYNGOLOGICA ITALICA. - ISSN 0392-100X. - 21(5)(2001), pp. 290-299.
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