Since 2005, researchers in the Department of Plastic Surgery have investigated more than 300 flaps as part of an effort to better define the blood supply and vascular territory of commonly used perforator flaps in reconstruction. This volume has allowed the researchers to provide a thorough analysis of the intrinsic blood supply. To determine their vascular territories, the team has investigated a wide variety of perforator flaps (DIEP, ALT, TDAP, SGAP/IGAP, etc.) and conventional flaps by performing injection studies of individual flap perforators.
Each perforator flap’s single perforator has its own unique vascular territory, which the researchers have termed a “perforasome.” The team continues to determine and investigate the perforasomes of various flaps, in order to provide better information on the nature of their blood flow and to help improve the design and application of perforator flaps in the clinical setting. The experience and research at the Department of Plastic Surgery has led to the development of new flaps and reconstructive strategies that have been translated into clinical use.