Soft tissue defects can occur for various reasons, but they are primarily due to trauma, tumor, and infection. Coverage choices may include primary closure, skin grafting, local cutaneous flaps, fasciocutaneous transposition flaps, island fascial or fasciocutaneous flaps, muscle or myocutaneous pedicled flaps, and microvascular free-tissue transfer. Despite the multitude of options for coverage, the authors have found four flaps to provide reliable coverage for most elbow deficits within their practice; these flaps are the latissimus dorsi flap, the radial forearm flap, the anconeus flap, and the free anterior lateral thigh flap. This article provides an overview of treatment options for elbow coverage, with specific emphasis on the use of these four specific flaps. © 2008 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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