Experience Using the Thoracodorsal Artery Perforator Flap in Axillary Hidradentitis Suppurativa Cases
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- Laredo Ortiz, C., López Castillo, V., Solesio Pilarte, F. et al. Aesth Plast Surg (2010) 34: 785. doi:10.1007/s00266-010-9544-4
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Hidradenitis suppurativa is a chronic and recurrent inflammatory disease of the apocrine glands characterized by recurrent abscesses, draining sinus tracts, and scarring that can be located in the groin, axilla, perineal, and perianal areas and less frequently in the scalp area. The chronic and relapsing nature of hidradenitis suppurativa leads to physical and psychological damage because it frequently causes disabling pain, diminished range of motion, and social isolation. Surgical removal of all apocrine glands in the affected region is the definitive treatment because conservative treatment usually does not prevent recurrence of hidradenitis suppurativa. The resultant defect can be either left to heal secondarily or closed primarily. Secondary healing in the axilla may cause contractures and stiffening of the shoulder. Primary healing requires direct closure, split-skin grafting, or locoregional flap transposition. The majority of the listed surgical procedures cause long hospital stays and leave contour defects in both the axilla and the arm. This report presents a series of 16 cases managed between March 2006 and June 2008. All the patients had endured a long period of medical treatment and subsequently required surgery for long-term relief of symptoms. The functional and aesthetic outcomes were very satisfactory in all cases despite the final scar. The initial reconstructive aims were achieved for these patients. The authors consider the thoracodorsal artery perforator flap a useful option for the surgical treatment of axillary hidradenitis suppurativa.