Scapular angle osteomyogenous flap in postmaxillectomy reconstruction

Defect, reconstruction, shoulder function, and harvest technique

Jonathan R. Clark, Martin Vesely, Ralph Gilbert*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

86 Citations (Scopus)


Background. Maxillary reconstruction continues to challenge in terms of optimal aesthetic and functional outcomes. The aim of this study was to describe the utility of the scapular angle osteomyogenous flap in a series of maxillectomy patients and to examine the donor site morbidity. Methods. This is a retrospective series of 14 patients undergoing maxillectomy and either primary or secondary reconstruction. The scapular angle can be oriented vertically and horizontally. Aesthetic, functional, and operative morbidity is described. The Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder and Hand (DASH) questionnaire was used to examine shoulder and upper limb morbidity. Results. Perioperative morbidity occurred in 4 patients. There were no free flap failures. Functional and aesthetic outcomes were acceptable with all patients having intelligible speech and none requiring nutritional supplementation. The DASH was completed by 12 of 14 patients. The mean and median DASH scores were 10.6 and 13, respectively. All patients gained full range of shoulder movement by 6 months after surgery. Conclusions. The scapular angle flap is well suited for maxillary reconstruction and donor site morbidity is low.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)10-20
Number of pages11
JournalHead and Neck
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • Free flap
  • Infrastructure
  • Maxillectomy
  • Midface
  • Reconstruction
  • Scapular angle
  • Scapular tip

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