The Use of Ear Tissue in the Reconstruction of Eyelids in Patients with Excised Neoplastic Lesions

Purpose: To assess surgical outcomes of lower lid reconstruction surgery using auricular conchal tissue. Methods: This prospective study included 20 patients that underwent reconstructive lower lid surgery using autologous auricle chondral-perichondral graft tissue. Auricle tissue was used to provide adequate support and protection with similar conjunctiva tarsal structures on overlying soft tissues in patients with pathologic inferior lid tissue loss requiring reconstructive surgery. Biopsies with histopathology and cytology analysis were taken after 1 year. Cytology analysis using CK 19 was used to confirm newly formed conjunctiva overlying the graft. Results: All patients showed no graft rejection.  Surgical outcomes were generally good, with minimal or no ocular complications. 16 of 20 patients had excellent results, showing good lid symmetry and esthetics, minimal auricular discomfort, patient satisfaction and proper lid function. Surgical outcomes were highly dependent on proper post-op conjunctiva formation. All patients were positive for CK 19, thus indicating proper conjunctiva tissue formation.  Conclusion: Lower lid reconstruction surgery using auricular chondral-perichondral conchal tissue is a good alternative in patients with neoplastic lesions. Autologous chondral-perichondral tissue provides good functional and mechanical support in the reconstructed lid, thus reducing the risks of ectropion and corneal exposure and ensuring a protected ocular surface.

Author(s) Details

Dr. Marco Zeppieri
Department of Ophthalmology, University Hospital of Udine, Italy.

Pier Camillo Parodi
Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, University Hospital of Udine, Italy.

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