Geoffrey Gurtner

Publication Details

  • Vascularized acellular dermal matrix island flaps for the repair of abdominal muscle defects PLASTIC AND RECONSTRUCTIVE SURGERY Chung, S., Hazen, A., Levine, J. P., Baux, G., Olivier, W. A., Yee, H. T., Margiotta, M. S., Karp, N. S., Gurtner, G. C. 2003; 111 (1): 225-232


    The potential widespread use of tissue-engineered matrices in soft-tissue reconstruction has been limited by the difficulty in fabricating and confirming a functional microcirculation. Acellular dermal matrix placed in a soft-tissue pocket acts as a scaffold to be incorporated by the host's fibrovascular tissue. A new method for noninvasive real-time observation of functional microvascular networks using orthogonal polarization spectral (OPS) imaging has recently been reported. Arterioles, venules, and capillaries can be directly visualized, and the movement of individual blood cells through them can be observed. The present study was performed to investigate the use of prefabricated acellular dermal matrix with an arteriovenous unit for the repair of abdominal muscle defects. OPS imaging was used to determine the presence of a functional microcirculation in the neovascularized matrix. In Sprague-Dawley rats, vascularized matrix was prefabricated by placing the superficial epigastric artery and vein on a 2-cm x 2-cm implant-type acellular dermal matrix in the thigh. Three weeks after implantation, the matrix-arteriovenous unit was elevated as an axial-type flap and a 2-cm x 2-cm full-thickness block of abdominal muscle immediately superior to the inguinal ligament was resected. Additional procedures were performed according to group: no repair (group 1, n = 20); repair with nonvascularized acellular dermal matrix (group 2, n = 20); repair with devascularized acellular dermal matrix (group 3, = 20); and repair with vascularized acellular dermal matrix (group 4, n = 20). OPS imaging (field of view, 1 mm in diameter; scan depth range, 0.2 mm) was performed on both sides of each flap on a total of 10 random distal regions before and after pedicle transection in group 3 and with the pedicle preserved in group 4. Hernia rate and duration of survival were compared for 21 days. OPS imaging showed directional blood cell movement through the capillary network in all areas scanned in group 4. No microvascular perfusion was observed after pedicle transection in group 3. Hernia rates of 100, 80, 90, and 0 percent were seen in groups 1, 2, 3, and 4, respectively. Median survival times of 9, 11.5, 9, and 21 postoperative days were noted in groups 1, 2, 3, and 4, respectively. Histopathologic analysis with factor VIII revealed full-thickness infiltration of the matrix by endothelial cells, signifying newly formed blood vessels. Repair of abdominal muscle defects using vascularized acellular dermal matrix resulted in no hernia and survival of all animals for the duration of study. However, repairs using avascular or devascularized matrix resulted in significant rates of hernia and decreased survival. Acellular dermal matrix can be prefabricated into vascularized tissue using an arteriovenous unit and used successfully to repair abdominal muscle defects. OPS imaging allowed for high-contrast direct visualization of microcirculation in previously acellular tissue following prefabrication with an arteriovenous unit.

    View details for DOI 10.1097/01.PRS.0000034934.05304.ED

    View details for Web of Science ID 000180191700039

    View details for PubMedID 12496583

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