Peroneus brevis rotation flap: Anatomic considerations and clinical experience

Timothy P. McHenry, John S. Early, Timothy G. Schacherer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Background: Large soft tissue defects of the distal third of the leg are common occurrences at trauma centers. Massive defects often require vascularized free tissue transfer for coverage; however, smaller defects may frequently be closed by rotation of local tissue. The peroneus brevis muscle is ideally located to provide coverage of the exposed distal fibula. Methods: An anatomic dissection of the peroneus brevis muscle and its vascular pedicles was performed in 10 fresh cadaveric leg specimens. Patients who underwent this procedure at our institution were retrospectively reviewed. Results: Each dissected muscle had an average of 3.5 vascular pedicles (range, 2-6), which arose from the peroneal artery in all but two cases. The average distance of the distal pedicle from the tip of the lateral malleolus was 6.7 cm (range, 3.5-12.0 cm). The muscle belly ended an average of 6.0 mm proximal to the tip of the lateral malleolus. Half of the specimens had muscle bellies that extended to or past the tip of the lateral malleolus. This rotation flap has been successful in covering four wounds with exposed distal fibula in four patients. Conclusion: The anatomic characteristics of the peroneus brevis muscle are ideal for soft tissue coverage of the distal fibula. Ease of elevation and reliability have made this rotational flap the procedure of choice for small soft tissue defects over the distal fibula at our institution.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)922-926
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Trauma - Injury, Infection and Critical Care
Issue number5
StatePublished - Jan 1 2001


  • Fibula fracture
  • Peroneus brevis
  • Rotation flap
  • Wound coverage

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine


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