Prior to surgical incision, antibiotic prophylaxis is administered with appropriate intravenous antibiotics. The skin is incised and the posterior incision dissection is done perpendicular, straight down, through the subcutaneous fat. After the skin is incised, the dissection is beveled outward anteriorly. This creates a subcutaneous flap anteriorly. At all locations, the dissection is done down to, but not violating, the clavipectoral fascia. Anteriorly, any axillary creases or folds are obliterated by scoring of the subcutaneous tissue. The axillary breast tissue is then excised, marked for appropriate laterality, and submitted for permanent pathology. The resulting void is copiously irrigated and hemostasis is ensured. Long acting anesthetic is used to infiltrate the regional sites for postoperative analgesia. A 15-French Blake drain is placed posteriorly through a separate stab incision. The skin edges are meticulously aligned at the anterior and posterior edges with redundancy kept in the middle (Figure 6). The incisions are closed in two layers. An absorbable suture is used in interrupted buried fashion followed by an absorbable subcuticular stitch. 2-octyl cyanoacrylate liquid adhesive and self-adhering mesh (Dermabond Prineo) is placed superficially. Video 1 summarizes the technique.
The post-auricular flap is utilized for larger ear reconstructions. More commonly, it is reserved for defects that are not amenable to primary closure or helical rim advancement flaps.