Z-plasty as an alternative choice for the treatment of recurrent local sternal wound infections

  • Emre KubatEmail author
  • Malik Abacı
  • Celal Selçuk Ünal
Original Article



Sternal wound infections after sternotomy are associated with high morbidity, high mortality, and prolonged hospital stay. The recurrence rate of sternal wound infections after single-stage closure is greater than expected. The aim of the study is to present our results of a consecutive series of Z-plasty for the treatment of recurrent sternal wound infections.


Between March 2015 and March 2017, a total of 9 patients were referred to our clinic with a recurrent sternal wound infection due to sternotomy with or without osteomyelitis. All patients previously underwent one or more surgical procedures for sternal infection. Negative pressure wound therapy and several debridement methods were performed before reconstruction. Two triangular double-transposition fasciocutaneous flap techniques as Z-plasty under local anesthesia was performed for all of the patients.


The flaps survived completely without any tissue loss. There were no major postoperative complications. One patient had recurrent infection after the flap procedure and was treated with antibiotic therapy. At 6 months of follow-up, all of the patients were able to return to normal activities of daily living with a high patient satisfaction rate.


Local sternal wound reconstruction is an effective, rapid, and simple with Z-plasty associated with low recurrence risk. We believe that Z-plasty can be used for recurrent local sternal wound infections as an alternative treatment option for selected patients without mechanical dehiscence.


Z-plasty Sternal wound infection Sternotomy Fasciocutaneous flap 



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Copyright information

© The Japanese Association for Thoracic Surgery 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Emre Kubat
    • 1
    Email author
  • Malik Abacı
    • 2
  • Celal Selçuk Ünal
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Cardiovascular SurgeryGülhane Training and Research HospitalAnkaraTurkey
  2. 2.Department of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic SurgeryKarabük Training and Research HospitalKarabükTurkey
  3. 3.Department of Cardiovascular SurgeryKarabük Training and Research HospitalKarabükTurkey

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