Ear amputation is a devastating injury characterized by a conspicuous deformity that is not easily concealed and can result in tremendous psychological trauma in addition to the physical insult. While numerous different approaches have been proposed, microvascular replantation is widely considered to deliver the best esthetic outcome. In this article, the authors report a case in which an unconventional perfusion pattern (i.e., arterialization of the venous system) was chosen, as intraoperative anatomic conditions precluded conventional vascular reconstruction. A 25-year-old male patient sustained a human bite resulting in subtotal amputation of his left ear. In the setting of an adequate arterial donor vessel, that is, branch of the posterior auricular artery, and a single suitable recipient vein (0.4 mm), the decision was made to perform an end-to-end arterio-venous anastomosis without the use of vein grafts. Medicinal leeches were applied postoperatively to provide for venous drainage. The ear survived and the patient was discharged after 14 days. To the best of our knowledge, this is first case of a subtotal ear amputation that was successfully replanted by arterialization of the venous system without the use of vein grafts and with preservation of the superficial temporal vessels.
View details for DOI 10.1002/micr.22308
View details for Web of Science ID 000343761700012
View details for PubMedID 25116223