DOI: 10.1097/dss.0000000000004148 ISSN: 1076-0512

Reconstruction of Broad Lower Lip Defects Using Karapandzic-Type Flaps

Jigar Patel, Jonathan L. Cook
  • Dermatology
  • General Medicine
  • Surgery


Reconstruction of lower lip defects is challenging because of the functional and aesthetic demands of the lower face. We review the functional and aesthetic outcomes of the Karapandzic-type flaps for reconstructing lower lip defects.


A retrospective review of patients who underwent repair using Karapandzic-type flaps.


Fifty patients with lower lip defects ranging from 20% to 95% (mean 59.2% ± 20%) were included. Eighteen patients (36%) were repaired using a bilateral flap, and 32 (64%) were reconstructed using a unilateral flap design. All patients had preservation of oral competency and a satisfactory aesthetic result. No patient complained of microstomia. A complication rate of 8% was noted (n = 4) with postoperative wound infection and small areas of dehiscence. There was no statistically significant difference in complication rates in patients older than 75 years, in patients with a history of head/neck radiation, or in defects greater than 70% of lower lip breadth.


Karapandzic-type flaps are versatile and reliable for the reconstruction of a broad range of lower lip defects. This one-stage procedure can produce superior functional and aesthetic results as compared with other local and distant flaps with minimal risk of functional microstomia.

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