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imageAbstractThe use of vascularized composite allografts allows for the reconstruction of complex scenarios that previously have required multistaged operations. Heart transplantation often follows a series of previous operations leading to chest wall deformities and significant mediastinal adhesions that can limit the use of larger hearts, making it difficult to find a suitable donor. Further, research has shown that the use of vascularized bone marrow and vascularized thymus in transplantation potentially prolongs graft survival with decreased immunosuppression requirements. The authors propose using a vascularized composite allograft of the chest wall consisting of sternum and thymus in conjunction with the heart for cardiac transplantation to allow for more flexibility from the donor pool, maintain chest wall integrity and physiology, and potentially immunoregulate the concomitant solid organ transplant.

Reviews of National Laser Institute