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Keywords:

  • Tracheal reconstruction;
  • infrahyoid myocutaneous flap;
  • thyroid cancer;
  • minimally invasive surgery

Abstract

Reconstruction of a tracheal defect is a challenge because it often requires invasive surgery associated with relatively high morbidity. We recently invented a less-invasive method using a modified infrahyoid myocutaneous (IHMC) flap for the reconstruction of a tracheal defect in an 83-year-old male. A tracheal defect, the right half of the cricoid cartilage plus the right three quarters of the I-IV tracheal cartilage (about 3 × 4 cm), was reconstructed with a modified IHMC flap composed of the sternohyoid and platysma muscles and a skin pedicle. Considering the age of patient, we avoided rigid reconstruction and used a soft silicone tracheal opening retainer (Koken Co., Ltd., Tokyo, Japan) as an anterior wall dilator after surgery and waited for the scarring of the flap until it become rigid enough. The postoperative course was uneventful and the trachea was reconstructed safely. Tracheal reconstruction with an IHMC flap is a useful and less-invasive alternative compared to end-to-end anastomosis or reconstruction with a forearm flap, which is currently used as a mainstay.