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J Korean Soc Plast Reconstr Surg. 2000 Jan;27(1):65-71. Korean. Original Article.
Cho HK , Lee DJ , Cha JH , Kim YW , Park KD .

Most of the peripheral nerve injuries from crushing or compressive forces are accompanied by surrounding soft tissue injuries. As a result, poor vascularity due to fibrosis and sacr formation compromises regeneration of the grafted nerve. Vascularized nerve graft shows superior regeneration to that of a non-vascularized one. However, the human body provides few donor sites of vascularized nerve graft clinically. We presumed that the prefabricated myoneural or adiponeural flap, which include fabricated nerves wrapped with surrounding vascularized muscle or adipose tissue flap, influences superiorly on the regeneration of grafted nerve because that surrounding vasculatity indirectly enhances the vascularity of the grafted nerve itself. Thirty adult male Sprague-Dawley rats were divided into three groups: 1) conventional reversed autogenous graft of the femoral nerve alone(n=10); 2) nerve graft entubulated with abdominal adipose tissue flap with a pedicle of inferior epigastric artery(n=10); 3) nerve graft entubulated with adductor muscle flap with a pedicle of the first muscular branch of the femoral artery(n=10). At three months postoperatively, grafted nerves were examined by electrophysiologic study to check amplitudes and motor nerve conduction velocities, as well as histopathologic study for evaluation of regenerated nerve cells, fibrosis and neo-vascularization. Consquently, nerve regeneration was found in all three groups. Both the myoneural and adiponeural flap groups had better improved results of nerve regeneration compared to that of the conventional nerve graft group. The result of myoneural flap group was superior to that of the adiponeural flap group. The myoneural flap group showed minimal fibrosis and less prominent neovascularization around moderately regenerated nerves. The adiponeural flap group showed more severe perineural and endoneural fibrosis, as well as vascular proliferation around focal regenerated nerves. The results of myoneural flap group proved to be statistically significant. We concluded that it is possible to use nerve graft entubulated with a vascularized muscle flap (myoneural flap) as a substitute for vascularized nerve graft.

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