Reversed latissimus dorsi muscle flap for repair of recurrent congenital diaphragmatic hernia.
BACKGROUND/PURPOSE: Neonates with large congenital diaphragmatic hernias (CDH) require prosthetic patch closure of the defect because of the paucity of native diaphragmatic tissue. As the child grows, patch separation can occur necessitating reoperation. Use of vascularized autologous tissue may decrease the incidence of reherniation as tissue incorporation and growth may be improved. The authors report our early experience using a local muscle advancement flap with microneural anastomosis for those children in whom reherniation develops after prosthetic patch placement. METHODS: Seven patients with CDH (6 left and 1 right) whose synthetic diaphragmatic patch separated from the chest wall resulting in a clinically significant recurrent hernia were followed up with prospectively. After dissecting the ipsilateral latissimus dorsi off the chest wall and dividing the thoracodorsal neurovascular bundle (based on its lumbar blood supply), the synthetic patch was removed via an eighth intercostal incision. The muscle flap was placed into the hemithorax through the bed of the tenth rib and sutured in place over a Vicryl mesh scaffold. The thoracodorsal nerve was anastomosed to the phrenic nerve. Functional analysis of the flap was performed in 4 patients. RESULTS: Age at placement of the muscle graft ranged from 2 months to 48 months (median, 24 months). There has been no evidence of reherniation after placement of the muscle graft. Long-term outcome and functional analysis of the flap was available in 4 patients (mean, 19 months). Two infants had fluoroscopic and sonographic evidence of nonparadoxical neodiaphragmatic motion. In one of these, electromyographic evidence of function was documented with a phrenic nerve conduction velocity of 22 meters per second. The third infant showed no evidence of neodiaphragmatic motion, and the fourth infant had paradoxical motion. CONCLUSIONS: This is the first direct documentation of phrenic nerve function in an infant with CDH. An innervated reversed latissimus dorsi (RLD) flap reconstruction for recurrent CDH provides an alternative to prosthetic patch repair. This technique offers the advantages of autologous vascularized tissue with potential phrenic nerve innervation and physiologic neodiaphragmatic motion.
Sydorak, RM; Hoffman, W; Lee, H; Yingling, CD; Longaker, M; Chang, J; Smith, B; Harrison, MR; Albanese, CT
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