Computed tomography (CT) was performed to evaluate the postoperative changes in free reinnervated muscles of 11 patients with soft tissue sarcomas. The muscle exhibited isodensity in six patients and low density in three. These nine patients had satisfactory recovery of the muscle without any clinical difference between the two groups. The remaining two muscles, which had unsatisfactory recovery, exhibited a mixture of very low and low density. The existence of a very low density area was thus related to worse recovery of function. Six of 11 patients underwent multiple CT at various stages after surgery. The cross-sectional area of the muscle changed significantly over time, and in five of the six transplants temporary shrinkage was observed for up to 1 year before muscle bulk increased. The muscle maintained its initial bulk at a mean follow-up of 111 months. These results indicate that CT can provide invaluable information on the structural changes in the free muscle.
European Journal of Plastic Surgery – Springer Journals
Published: Jul 1, 2003
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