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In an attempt to predict venous flap viability, uptake and excretion of fluorescein dye injected intravenously was followed quantitatively at 10 min intervals on flaps on the surface of rabbit ears, with the use of a fiberoptic dermofluorometer.
This instrument is a reliable indicator of circulation in non-arterialised or arterialised venous flaps, as it is in conventional flaps.
This work shows that arterialised venous flaps are more reliable and have a larger skin territory than non-arterialised ones. Survival of the arterialised venous flap can be attributed primarily to the blood circulation, while the non-arterialised venous flap relies for its survival on both blood circulation and plasmatic imbibition from the bed as well.
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Accepted: January 25, 1993
Received: January 6, 1992
© 1993 The British Asscociation of Plastic Surgeons. Published by Elsevier Inc.