Paramedian forehead flap for nasal reconstruction may involve the use of a structural graft. The authors hypothesized that the use of structural grafts with paramedian forehead flap is associated with an increased risk of 30-day complications.
This is a retrospective study of the American College of Surgeon (ACS) National Surgical Quality Improvement Program (NSQIP). We identified all patients undergoing paramedian forehead flap reconstruction from 2007 through 2018 using Current Procedural Terminology code 15731. Patients who had structural graft harvested at the time of paramedian forehead flap were identified using Current Procedural Terminology codes. Groups were defined based on the use of structural grafts. Propensity score matching was performed using preoperative and intraoperative characteristics to produce matched cohorts. The authors further stratified individual graft types to identify differential risks associated with each. Logistic regression was then used to determine whether the use of structural grafts was associated with increased risk for 30-day complications.
The authors identified 1198 patients with paramedian forehead flap reconstruction, of whom 325 (27.1%) required structural grafts. Propensity score matching 1:1 yielded 247 patients in each of the matched cohorts. Overall 30-day complications (4.5% versus 5.3%), wound related complications (3.2% versus 4.1%), systemic complications (1.2% versus 2%), unplanned reoperation (6.5% versus 3.2%), and unplanned readmission (6.6% versus 10.2%) were similar between the 2 groups (P > 0.05). Subgroup analysis of different graft types showed that costochondral graft was associated with increased wound related complications (0.9% versus 8.3%, P = 0.03). The odds of having wound related complications with the use of costochondral graft was OR = 5.3, CI = 1.5–18.8, P = 0.02.
Although the use of structural grafts does not increase risk of overall 30-day complications, there is an increased risk of wound related complications associated with the use of costochondral and rib grafts.