The effects of venous occlusion on the perfusion of porcine myocutaneous groin flaps were studied by means of the laser Doppler and the dermofluorometer. A consistent decrease in fluorometer readings following venous clamping with rebound to original or greater levels after unclamping was noted. A similar pattern was noted in laser Doppler studies. However, flow as measured by the Doppler remained significant (>100 mV) even with venous outflow occlusion. It is hypothesized that the Doppler is more prone than the dermofluorometer to reflect non-nutritive flow in the flap during the early period following flap construction and, therefore, may be less accurate in the evaluation of actual flap microperfusion. The fluorometer was determined to be the more desirable instrument in monitoring the microcirculatory status of myocutaneous flaps during the immediate period after flap elevation and transposition.
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