Prophylactic plastic surgery closure of neurosurgical scalp incisions reduces the incidence of wound complications in previously-operated patients treated with bevacizumab (Avastin(R)) and radiation
Neurosurgical craniotomy, craniectomy, or other trans-galeal interventions are performed for a variety of indications, including the resection of benign or malignant tumors, hematoma evacuation, and for the management of intractable seizure disorders. Despite an overall low complication rate of intervention, wound healing complications such as dehiscence, surgical site infection, and cerebrospinal fluid leak are not uncommon. A retrospective review was performed of all patients who underwent scalp incision closure at a single institution by a single plastic surgeon between 2006 and 2013. Sixty patients (83 procedures) were included in the study. Fifty-seven patients (95.0 %) underwent previous craniotomy, craniectomy, or other trans-galeal procedure. Of the total 60 patients, 35 patients received preoperative radiation. Sixteen patients received bevacizumab prior to their index case, while 12 received bevacizumab postoperatively. Ten patients (16.7 %) required additional plastic surgical intervention for wound complications after their index plastic surgery procedure. Plastic surgery was consulted prophylactically in 34 patients (38 procedures). When plastic surgery was consulted prophylactically, 4 patients (11.8 %) required further wound revision. None of the 14 patients who underwent prophylactic plastic surgery closure for previous scalp incision, preoperative bevacizumab, and XRT administration required re-intervention. Plastic surgery closure of complex scalp incisions reduces the incidence of wound complications among patients who underwent previous neurosurgical intervention, XRT administration, and preoperative bevacizumab administration. This is particularly true when plastic surgery closure is performed "prophylactically." Further collaboration between the neurosurgical and plastic surgery teams is therefore warranted, particularly in the setting of these high-risk cases.
School of Medicine