Prediction of postoperative seroma after latissimus dorsi breast reconstruction

  • Randolph L
  • Barone J
  • Angelats J
 et al. 
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BACKGROUND: The latissimus dorsi flap has become a first-line option in reconstruction of the breast cancer patient. Donor-site seroma is a commonly described postoperative complication of the latissimus dorsi flap. METHODS: A retrospective chart review from 1998 to 2003 of all patients undergoing latissimus dorsi breast reconstruction was performed (n = 50). Age of the patients, timing of breast reconstruction, type of nodal dissection (axillary versus sentinel versus none), and chemotherapy status of the patients were examined. RESULTS: The overall incidence of seroma formation was 47 percent. Those patients who had undergone prior or concurrent nodal dissection at the time of breast reconstruction were found to have a higher incidence of seroma formation than patients who had no nodal dissection (52 percent versus 25 percent) (p = 0.15). Age also was a risk factor for seroma formation, as 63 percent of patients older than 50 had formed seroma as compared with 39 percent of those younger than age 50 (p = 0.08). CONCLUSION: The authors conclude that advanced age and the presence of nodal disruption before or concurrent with latissimus dorsi breast reconstruction are predictors of donor-site seroma formation.

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  • Laura C. Randolph

  • Julie Barone

  • Juan Angelats

  • Diane V. Dado

  • Darl K. Vandevender

  • Margo Shoup

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