The Profunda Artery Perforator Flap: Investigating the Perforasome Using Three-Dimensional Computed Tomographic Angiography
Wong, Corrine M.D.; Nagarkar, Purushottam M.D.; Teotia, Sumeet M.D.; Haddock, Nicholas T. M.D.
Methods: Ten cadaveric thighs were dissected centered over the profunda artery perforator. The perforator was injected with contrast medium and the flap was then subjected to computed tomographic scanning using a GE Lightspeed 16-slice scanner. The three-dimensional images were viewed, and measurements were obtained using Aquarius software, including horizontal and vertical extensions of the flap and areas of perfusion. Clinical examples are presented.
Results: A profunda artery perforator (occasionally two) was consistently found in the upper medial thigh region, posterior to the gracilis muscle. The area of vascularity shown by the spread of contrast extends inferiorly beyond the usual lower border of the profunda artery perforator flap, which is usually 7 cm wide. In injected cadaveric flaps, the mean horizontal dimension was 16.7 cm and the mean vertical dimension was 16.5 cm. The mean area perfused was 8812 cm2.
Conclusions: The profunda artery perforator flap is a vascularly sound flap, and is a good option for autologous breast reconstruction. Advantages include a reliable pedicle, no position changes required, and possibly an improved donor-site contour from a thigh lift. It is an excellent alternative to abdominally based free flaps and can also be used in conjunction with other flaps for further volume enhancement.