Introduction: Necrosis, wound breakdown, and infection represent major complications associated with radical vulvectomy. We aimed to analyze the feasibility of hyperbaric oxygen (HBO₂) therapy as an adjunctive treatment for such complications.
Methods: We performed a retrospective analysis of the medical records, clinical charts, and operative records of vulvar cancer patients who underwent hyperbaric oxygen therapy after extensive surgical resection in our institute between 2012 and 2016, with a comparison of the clinical outcomes of patients with similar surgical procedures andsevere wound complications who did not undergo HBO₂.
Results: A total of 16 patients were included in the study. In the subgroup treated with HBO₂, seven patients were identified. Two patients had primary surgery, while five had recurrent surgery (of these, two had previously undergone radiation therapy). Six patients received reconstructive flaps (five myocutaneous and onefasciocutaneous), while one patient had primary suture. Dehiscence, ischemia and necrosis were estimated to cover 30%-80% of the surgical surface area. Surgical debridement was performed in six patients. Daily 90-minute sessions in the hyperbaric chamber were performed at a pressure of 2.2 atmospheres absolute, with partial oxygen pressure of 1672 mbar. Infection control and satisfactory healing were achieved using 10-61 sessions. All patients in the subgroup who did not receive HBO₂ required surgical debridement due to partial or near-total flap necrosis, with two reconstructive interventions required.
Conclusions: Hyperbaric oxygen therapy was an efficient adjuvant for wound healing and infection control in managing wound complications after extensive vulvar resections.
Lopes A, Costa RLR, Pinto GLS, Forghieri MCG, Larrè A, de Almeida TG, de Souza CB, Sartorelli V, Coelho FRG, Branco JR. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy as adjuvant for treating wound complications after extensive resection for vulvar malignancy. Undersea Hyperb Med. 2018 Jan-Feb;45(1):27-32. PMID: 29571229.