The variability of the Superficial Inferior Epigastric Artery (SIEA) and its angiosome: a clinical anatomical study

Rozen, Warren M., Chubb, Daniel, Grinsell, Damien, and Ashton, Mark W. (2010) The variability of the Superficial Inferior Epigastric Artery (SIEA) and its angiosome: a clinical anatomical study. Microsurgery, 30 (5). pp. 386-391.

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Abstract

Introduction: The superficial inferior epigastric artery (SIEA) is a useful pedicle in supply to the lower abdominal integument, with its use sparing damage to rectus abdominis muscle or sheath. However, it is limited in usefulness due to its anatomical variability. While previous anatomical studies have been limited in number and study design, the use of preoperative imaging has enabled the analysis of this vasculature in large numbers and greater anatomical detail.

Methods: A clinical anatomical study of 500 hemi-abdominal walls in 250 consecutive patients undergoing preoperative computed tomographic angiography (CTA) prior to autologous breast reconstruction was undertaken. The presence, size, location, and branching pattern of the SIEA were assessed in each case.

Results: The SIEA was identified in 468 cases, an incidence of 94%. Its mean diameter was 0.6 mm, and in 24% of cases was of a diameter >1.5 mm. SIEA location was highly variable, with mean position 2-cm lateral to the linea semilunaris (range 0–8 cm lateral), and relationship to the superficial inferior epigastric vein (SIEV) was also highly variable, with the distance between them ranging from 0.3 to 8.5 cm apart. SIEA branches directly crossed the abdominal midline in 5% of cases. Larger SIEA diameters correlated with a decrease in diameter of ipsilateral DIEA perforators.

Conclusion: The SIEA is present more frequently than previously demonstrated, but is typically too small for use in free tissue transfer. The variable degree of SIEA branching suggests that its territory of supply is also variable, and that preoperative imaging may be useful in planning SIEA flaps.

Item ID: 32419
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1098-2752
Date Deposited: 29 Apr 2014 00:05
FoR Codes: 11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1103 Clinical Sciences > 110320 Radiology and Organ Imaging @ 50%
11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1103 Clinical Sciences > 110323 Surgery @ 50%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9201 Clinical Health (Organs, Diseases and Abnormal Conditions) > 920118 Surgical Methods and Procedures @ 50%
97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970111 Expanding Knowledge in the Medical and Health Sciences @ 50%
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