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BioMed Research International
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 237146, 6 pages
Clinical Study

Use of the Vascularized Iliac-Crest Flap in Musculoskeletal Lesions

Orthopaedic Department of HC-UNICAMP, P.O. Box 6142, 13083-888 Campinas, SP, Brazil

Received 26 April 2013; Accepted 5 September 2013

Academic Editor: Zbigniew Gugala

Copyright © 2013 Cristiane Tonoli et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Bone loss was in the past treated by several methods, such as bone distraction and the use of nonvascularized or tissue-bank bone grafts. With the advent of modern microsurgical techniques, the vascularized bone flap has been used with good results; it resolves local nutritional problems, repairs soft tissue that is often damaged by severe trauma, and treats bone loss due to tumors, pseudarthroses, and osteomyelitis. This paper reports the authors’ experience with the use of vascularized iliac-crest flaps to treat orthopedic pathologies in five patients with traumatic bone loss (<10 cm), three with osteomyelitis, and three with atrophic nonunion. In all cases, the same surgeon obtained a vascularized iliac-crest flap with a pedicle based on the deep iliac circumflex artery. All flaps consolidated within a mean period of 3 months. These findings demonstrate that the use of an iliac-crest flap is a treatment option in cases of bone loss and that it is associated with good functional results and minimal donor-site morbidity.