The use of free vascularized fibular grafts in skeletal reconstruction for bone tumors in children.
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The reconstruction of large skeletal defects in children following resection of a bone tumor presents a unique challenge to the orthopaedic surgeon. Issues in this population that are not present in the adult population include significant remaining growth potential, the desire for biologic preservation of the joint surface, and the need for a long-term viable reconstruction in patients who are anticipated to survive for decades. The use of a free vascularized fibular graft, supplied by the peroneal vessels in intercalary fibular grafts and the anterior tibial vessels in proximal fibular grafts, has been shown to provide biologic reconstruction that successfully addresses these issues in the pediatric population. Specific techniques are applied in the upper and lower extremity to provide long-term excellent functional results. Experience in microvascular surgery and careful postoperative care are required for the success of these procedures.
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