Aesthetic reconstruction for syndactyly using the "gradation skin graft" from the plantar instep area

Kaoru Sasaki, Masahiro Sasaki, Junya Oshima, Yukiko Aihara, Mitsuru Sekido
Journal of Plastic, Reconstructive & Aesthetic Surgery: JPRAS 2021 June 6
In syndactyly, the donor site of the skin graft should have the characteristics of both the dorsal and the plantar or palmar skin because the skin defects after the dividing procedure are at the lateral sides of the digits. The plantar instep region has a color and texture border between the dorsal and plantar skin as a gradational boundary belt. We performed "gradation skin grafting" including the belt for syndactyly. We retrospectively analyzed 110 skin graft sites in 56 patients, aged ≤ 2 years, with syndactyly of the hand or foot. The follow-up durations were ≥ 6 months. The skin graft sites were divided into the gradation skin graft (G[+]) and the traditional skin graft (G[-]) groups. They were examined for matching of the skin graft with the circumferential skin, the causes of mismatching, the closing method of the donor site, and the complications. Regarding skin graft matching, the excellent rate of achievement was greater in the G(+) than in the G(-) group (P < 0.01). The causes of mismatching were misalignment of the gradational boundary belt in the G(+) group and postoperative pigmentation in the G(-) group. All the donor sites were closed directly without complications. The gradation skin graft for syndactyly was cosmetically superior to the traditional one from the submalleolar area. The design's hazard is that the gradational boundary belt of the skin graft should match the alignment with the gradational boundary belt around the skin defect of the digits.

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