Scalp Avulsion: Accident Tears Woman’s Scalp Apart

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BMJ Case Reports

64-year-old undergoes scalp replantation after an accident

A 64-year-old lady from Japan presented to the emergency room after her hair got stuck in a spinning machine and her scalp was torn off (called “scalp avulsion”). The injury extended from the tip of her nose up to the occipital region. Moreover, when she presented to the emergency room, she was conscious.

When the doctors examined her, she had normal responses and reflexes.

Emergency Surgery

The doctors performed an emergency surgery known as total scalp replantation. Additionally, they revascularized her scalp by anastomosing the right superficial temporal artery and vein. The procedure restored the normal blood supply to the scalp.

“ At the hospital, the doctors removed the hair from the scalp and rinsed it with a saline. Additionally, they sterilized the scalp before the reattachment surgery .”

said lead author Dr Jun Karibe, a plastic surgeon at Yamanashi University Hospital in Japan, who treated the woman

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Complications

There were no major complications after the surgery. However, she developed skin necrosis at the back of her head. Therefore, the doctors used a skin graft to replace the necrosed skin 2 weeks after the operation. The wound healed and the doctors observed hair growth in this area.

Long term follow-up

The doctors conducted a 2-month follow-up after the surgery. The woman had thick hair growth on her scalp. Moreover, she was able to move her right eyebrow one year after surgery. However, paralysis of the frontal muscles remained.

“We were surprised to see the result of [the] operation, My colleagues, including me, didn’t expect this amazing recovery.” .

SAID LEAD AUTHOR DR. JUN KARIBE, A PLASTIC SURGEON AT YAMANASHI UNIVERSITY HOSPITAL IN JAPAN, WHO TREATED THE WOMAN

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