The outcome of prostaglandin-E1 and dextran-40 compared to no antithrombotic therapy in head and neck free tissue transfer: Analysis of 1,351 cases in a single center

Francesco M.G. Riva, Yen Chou Chen, Ngian Chye Tan, Pao Yuan Lin, Yun Ta Tsai, Hsueh Wen Chang, Yur Ren Kuo*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

58 Scopus citations

Abstract

Free tissue transfer has become a popular technique for soft tissue defect reconstruction in head and neck cancer ablation. Although high success rates and good reliability of free flaps are proven, microvascular thrombosis is still the most critical issue for microsurgeons. Pharmacological antithrombotic agents are widely used but their efficacy is still debated. In this study, we analyzed whether prostaglandin-E1 (PGE1) and dextran-40 can improve the outcomes compared to no antithrombotic therapy at all. We retrospectively reviewed 1,351 free flaps performed for head and neck reconstruction after cancer ablation. Three groups defined were 232 flaps received PGE1, 283 flaps received dextran-40, and 836 received no antithrombotic therapy. The demographics of these three groups indicated no statistical differences. The results showed that flap survival revealed no significant difference among PGE1, dextran-40, and control group (P = 0.734). There was a tendency to hematomas in PGE1 group (P = 0.056) when compared with other two groups. Dextran-40 significantly increased flap failure rate in high-risk patients with diabetes mellitus (P = 0.006) or hypertension (P = 0.003), when compared with PGE1 and control group. These results revealed antithrombotic therapy with PGE1 and dextran-40 do not determine a significant improvement in flap survival.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)339-343
Number of pages5
JournalMicrosurgery
Volume32
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - 07 2012

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