Digit and hand replantation

Alexandros E Beris, Marios G Lykissas, Anastasios V Korompilias, Gregory I Mitsionis, Marios D Vekris, Ioannis P Kostas-Agnantis
Archives of Orthopaedic and Trauma Surgery 2010, 130 (9): 1141-7
For the past 45 years, the advent of microsurgery has led to replantation of almost every amputated part such as distal phalanx, finger tip, etc. Replantation of digits and hand can restore not only circulation, but also function and cosmetic of the amputated part. The goals of replantation are to restore circulation and regain sufficient function and sensation of the amputated part. Strict selection criteria are necessary to optimize the functional result. The management of this type of injuries includes meticulous preoperative management, microsurgical experience and continuous postoperative care. Among various factors influencing the outcome, the most important are the type and the level of injury, ischemia time, history of diabetes, age, sex, and smoking history. During the replantation procedure, bone stabilization, tendon repair, arterial anastomoses, venous anastomoses, nerve coaptation, and skin coverage should be performed. All structures should be repaired primarily, unless a large nerve gap or a flexor tendon avulsion injury is present. Adequate postoperative evaluation is mandatory to avoid early or late complications. To improve functional results, many replantation patients may need further reconstructive surgery.

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