Postoperative Outcomes of Local Skin Flaps Used in Oncologic Reconstructive Surgery of the Upper Cutaneous Lip: A Systematic Review

Mathew N. Nicholas, Annie Liu, Airiss R. Chan, Jocelyn Jia, Kaitlin Fuller, Daniel B. Eisen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


BACKGROUND: Despite many options for upper lip reconstruction, each method's advantages and disadvantages are unclear. OBJECTIVE: To summarize complications and functional and aesthetic outcomes of localized skin flaps for oncological reconstruction of the upper cutaneous lip (PROSPERO CRD42020157244). METHODS: The search was conducted in Ovid MEDLINE, Ovid EMBASE, and CENTRAL on December 14, 2019. Two reviewers screened 2,958 results for eligibility. Bias assessment was conducted using ROBINS-I criteria. RESULTS: Our search identified 12 studies reporting outcomes of V-Y advancement, ergotrid, rotation, Karapandzic, alar crescent, and propeller facial artery perforator flaps. Flap complications (infection, hemorrhage/hematoma, wound dehiscence, and flap necrosis) ranged from 0% to 7.69%. Functional outcomes (salivary continence, microstomia, and paresthesia) were poorest for Karapandzic flaps. Aesthetic outcomes, when reported, stated satisfaction rates greater than 90%. V-Y advancement flaps reported the highest rates of poor scarring (0%-20%) and need for revision surgery (0%-46.7%). CONCLUSION: Our results provide dermatologic surgeons an overview of upper cutaneous lip flap outcomes reported in the literature. In general, we noted high patient satisfaction rates and low complication rates. Additional research into outcomes of other commonly used flaps is needed. Standardization of reported outcomes could allow further comparison across different flaps or across studies of the same flap.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1047-1051
Number of pages5
JournalDermatologic surgery : official publication for American Society for Dermatologic Surgery [et al.]
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 1 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Dermatology


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