Effectiveness of Temporal Augmentation Using a Calvarial Onlay Graft during Pterional Craniotomy
PURPOSE The use of temporalis myofascial flap (TMF) as a pedicled flap in craniofacial reconstructive surgery is well established. The transposition of temporalis muscle results in a large hollowing of the temporal fossa that leaves the patient with a cosmetic impairment. Reconstruction of this donor site deformity is desirable. One of the established reconstructive techniques is the use of a prefabricated porous high-density polyethylene (HDPE) temporal implant. In order to evaluate results from its use, we retrospectively reviewed a series of 21 consecutive patients. MATERIALS AND METHODS From October 1999 to October 2004, 21 patients (7 men and 14 women) aged 32 to 85 years (mean, 65) had their surgical defects reconstructed with the use of a TMF. The majority of patients (15 of 21) had squamous cell carcinoma of the maxilla or the maxillary sinus. In 17 patients, the reconstructive procedure was performed simultaneously with the oncological resection, whereas in 4, a secondary reconstruction was performed. In 1 patient, bilateral TMFs were used to cover a total maxillectomy defect. Standard surgical approach was used in all patients during TMF elevation. The temporal defect was reconstructed with the use of a prefabricated sterile HDPE implant (Medpor; Porex Surgical Inc, College Park, GA). Fixation of the implant to the recipient infratemporal fossa was performed with black silk sutures (in 2 patients) or titanium miniscrews (in 19 patients). The manufacturer's instructions for the placement of the implant were followed in all cases. One of the 21 operated patients preoperatively received radiotherapy (RT). Of the remaining 20 patients, 5 underwent postoperative RT. RESULTS Eighteen patients are alive and free from disease. One died during the perioperative period from myocardial infarction and 2 more from locoregional recurrence of their disease, 18 and 27 months postoperatively. In all 21 patients, the placement of the Medpor temporal implant was successful and no immediate or perioperative complications resulting from its use were encountered, giving an overall success implantation rate of 100%. Follow-up ranged from 9 to 70 months (mean, 39). The condition of the implant was evaluated with computed tomography in 18 of the 21 patients as part of the standard postoperative assessment. Radiographic results of the recipient site did not reveal any abnormalities. In 7 patients, the contour of the HDPE implant could be manually palpated, and in 3, it could be seen to protrude subcutaneously. Esthetic results were judged satisfactory from all patients. The hemicoronal skin flap healed uneventfully in all patients and did not cause a visible scar even to bald male patients. CONCLUSIONS The reconstruction of the temporal defect after TMF transposition with the use of a Medpor temporal implant is an easy and safe method. The implant does not seem to cause any tissue reaction, and long-term functional and esthetic results are excellent. When properly used and the relevant manufacturers' instructions are carefully followed, the success rate of the method is extremely high.