Resolution of ptosis is a key step to the success of many plastic surgery procedures. Ptosis is a manifestation of tissue stretch. Tissue stretch can occur as a result of the natural aging process or health of the patient, or tissue may stretch under added weight or volume, such as when implants are placed. Surgical rejuvenation of ptotic tissues is very effective and results in marked changes in the patient profile yet the tissue that resulted in the need for the procedure first place has not improved and ptosis can recur. Recent developments in long-term resorbable porous materials have provided surgeons with the opportunity to experiment with tissue reinforcement in plastic surgery procedures. These new materials have a low profile, rapid tissue integration, and a long-term strength retention profile. Long-term resorbable scaffolds such as poly-4-hydroxybutyrate (P4HB) natural scaffold (GalaFLEX scaffold, Galatea Surgical, Inc., Lexington, MA) have shown promise for a host of plastic surgery indications. This article presents clinical experience with GalaFLEX for soft tissue reinforcement in three different clinical applications; including the reinforcement of the superficial muscular aponeurotic system (SMAS) in minimally invasive facelift, reinforcement of the skin envelope in mastopexy, and reinforcement of the breast capsule (pocket) in revisional breast surgery. Soft tissue reinforcement has been shown to provide increased mechanical strength as well as improved maintenance of postoperative results.
LEVEL OF EVIDENCE: 5 Therapeutic.
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