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Estimating tissue expander volume and skin availability using VECTRA 3D imaging software

Published:August 25, 2020DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.bjps.2020.08.070
      Tissue expansion is a valuable tool, particularly for large defects of the scalp to allow transposition of hair-bearing skin.
      • Aya R.
      • Kawai K.
      • Kawazoe T.
      • Suzuki S
      A retrospective analysis on the proper size of tissue expanders to treat scalp lesions.
      Difficulties may be encountered when choosing the correct expanders, particularly in the estimation of skin availability post-expansion. Traditionally, this was estimated by measuring the circumference of the inflated expander and subtracting the baseplate width. This technique is fairly rudimentary and does not take into account varying soft tissue coverage thickness overlying the expander, or if it is placed in a submuscular plane. Furthermore, when placed on a convex surface such as the scalp or chest, baseplate deformation makes this tissue availability estimation more inaccurate. While various algorithms have been proposed,
      • Aya R.
      • Kawai K.
      • Kawazoe T.
      • Suzuki S
      A retrospective analysis on the proper size of tissue expanders to treat scalp lesions.
      these appear to be most accurate when expanders are placed in a non-mobile subcutaneous plane.

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