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Had sternectomy and muscle flap done. What are the upcoming risks if I go for replacement of muscle flap adhered to heart?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2011
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I had a sternectomy and muscle flap done in May of 2008. Since that time I have found no medical articles about the quality of life to be expected afterward and no information of any other kind except what we, a group of survivors share with each other. Has any progress been made in finding and developing and artificial sternum.
To complicate matters, my heart surgeon told me that the muscle flap has adhered to the heart itself and to peel it back for any replacement was not a survivable option. However, since I am not the only survivor out here, Is any thing happening .
Posted Thu, 22 Aug 2013 in Hypertension and Heart Disease
Answered by Dr. Vidya KR 3 hours later

Thank you for the query.

I can understand your problem.

There are not much articles on sternal reconstruction therapy as the condition is not common. But now artificial sternum is available.

You can refer the below mentioned article about evaluate the outcomes in patients undergoing sternal reconstruction among 24 patients who underwent sternectomy with a titanium rib bridge system reconstruction and postoperative data were collected prospectively. This is not about quality of life. XXXXXXX Fabre et al. A paradigm shift for sternal reconstruction using a novel titanium rib bridge system following oncological resections.

Based on your history and your cardiologist advice, If the muscle flap has adhered to heart then there are chances of multiple cardiac problem like arrhythmia, cardiac failure etc. But peeling it back will cause more damage to the heart, so based on examination and the extent of the muscle flap adhered to heart only your heart surgeon can decide for its management.

Have adequate regular sleep, plenty of fluids, nutritious diet with required calorie. Have strict control on your BP and cholesterol level to avoid any complications to it. Adhere to your doctor advice and all the medication prescribed. Hope I answered your question. Consult your doctor for further management.

Feel free to ask me if you have any further queries or doubts and I shall be glad to help you out. Please accept my answer in case you do not have further queries.
Wish you good health. Take care.

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