Secondary free-flap reconstruction following ablation for acute invasive fungal sinusitis

Jordan J. Allensworth, Scott H. Troob, Tyler S. Weaver, Javier D. Gonzalez, Daniel Petrisor, Mark K. Wax

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Objective: Acute invasive fungal sinusitis (AIFS) is a frequently fatal infection for which extensive and debilitating surgical debridement is a mainstay of therapy. Resulting defects are often composite in nature, mandating free tissue-transfer reconstruction. Outcomes data for free flap reconstruction are limited. The purpose of this study was to examine surgical outcomes and survival in patients undergoing free flap transfer following invasive fungal sinusitis. Study Design: Retrospective case series. Methods: Between 1995 and 2015, patients undergoing operative debridement for AIFS were identified. Surgical records were used to identify survivors of acute infection who subsequently underwent free flap reconstructive surgery. Patient demographics, cause of immune compromise, defect description, flap type, perioperative complications, indications for revision surgery, functional outcomes, and long-term survival were reviewed. Results: Forty-four patients were treated for AIFS, of those, 30 (68%) survived acute infection. Ten patients underwent maxillectomy, six with orbital exenteration, and were designated candidates for reconstruction. Eight patients underwent reconstruction. Median time from debridement to reconstruction was 67.5 days. Flap types included latissimus dorsi, scapula, anterolateral thigh, rectus, radial forearm, and fibula. Median follow-up was 7.7 months. No perioperative complications were encountered, and all subjects remained disease-free, able to speak and eat normally without prosthetic supplementation. Seven patients (87%) are currently alive. Conclusion: Reconstruction of defects left by invasive fungal sinusitis using free-tissue transfer resulted in successful flap survival, with no disease recurrence for all defects and flap types reviewed. Survivors of AIFS are able to tolerate midface reconstruction, with favorable functional outcomes and survival rates. Level of Evidence: 4. Laryngoscope, 127:815–819, 2017.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)815-819
Number of pages5
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1 2017


  • Flap
  • ablation
  • fungal
  • invasive
  • reconstruction
  • sinusitis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology


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