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Sternocleidomastoid muscle flap reconstruction during parotidectomy to prevent Frey's syndrome and facial contour deformity

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March 1, 2005
by Korhan Asal, MD; Ahmet Köybasioglu, MD; Erdogan Inal, MD; Ahmet Ural, MD; S. Sabri Uslu, MD; Alper Ceylan, MD; Fikret Ileri, MD
We studied the incidence of Frey's syndrome and facial contour deformity in two groups of patients who had undergone superficial parotidectomy. One group was made up of 12 patients who were randomized to undergo reconstruction of the surgical defect with a sternocleidomastoid muscle flap; the other 12 patients did not receive a flap. All 24 patients were evaluated via a short questionnaire, the starch-iodine test, and a visual examination. On the questionnaire, none of the 24 patients said they experienced abnormal facial sweating, flushing, or warmth while eating, although 6 of the 12 patients in the nonflap group had a mildly positive starch-iodine test. No patient in the flap group had a positive test. The difference between the two groups was statistically significant (p < 0.05). No statistically significant difference was seen between the two groups with respect to cosmetic results.

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