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Technique Tip

Platysma-flap Approach to the Clavicle

Gallusser, Nicolas, MD*; Goetti, Patrick, MD; Moor, Beat K., PD, MD*

Techniques in Hand & Upper Extremity Surgery: March 2019 - Volume 23 - Issue 1 - p 31–32
doi: 10.1097/BTH.0000000000000219

The surgical treatment of a displaced fracture of the clavicular shaft generally consists in an open reduction and plate fixation. The most common complications of the classic direct “transplatysma” approach are hardware related. These consist of simple hardware irritations requiring secondary plate removal but also feared wound healing problems ranging from dehiscence to superficial and deep wound infections. In the present article, we describe the so-called “platysma-flap” approach in which the platysma muscle is entirely preserved and distally raised as a flap. This modified exposure allows to cover the osteosynthesis with a viable, well perfused soft tissue envelope and is a safe alternative to the standard “transplatysma” approach.

*Valais Hospital, Martigny

Lausanne University Hospital, Lausanne, Switzerland

N.G. and P.G. contributed equally.

Conflicts of Interest and Source of Funding: The authors report no conflicts of interest and no source of funding.

Address correspondence and reprint requests to Beat K. Moor, PD, MD, Department of Orthopedic and Trauma Surgery, Valais Hospital, Av. de la Fusion 27, 1920 Martigny, Switzerland. E-mail:

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