Effects of Different Applications on Postoperative Seroma Formation and Wound Healing Following Mastectomy and Axillary Dissection in Rats
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Alcoholic Iodine
Flap Fixation Technique
Fibrin Glue

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Karaköse, O., Pülat, H., Çağlar Özçelik, K., Zihni, İsmail, Kürşat Bozkurt, K., Şenol, S., Nihan Cankara, F., & Erol Eroğlu, H. (2021). Effects of Different Applications on Postoperative Seroma Formation and Wound Healing Following Mastectomy and Axillary Dissection in Rats. Galician Medical Journal, 28(1), E202115. https://doi.org/10.21802/gmj.2021.1.5


The most frequent postoperative complication after breast surgery is seroma formation. Seroma occurs due to lymphatic and vascular fluid leakage into the dead space created by surgical dissection.

The objective of the research was to evaluate the effects of local fibrin glue, tetracycline, talc applications, and flap fixation technique on reducing seroma formation after mastectomy and axillary dissection. In addition, we aimed to determine the level of efficacy for these applications, as well as to identify the most appropriate method to be used in operations with high risk of seroma formation.

Materials and Methods. This experimental study was conducted using a total of 60 female Wistar albino rats. They were allocated into six groups and each comprised ten rats. Unilateral mastectomy and axillary dissection were performed on all the rats. Local applications of fibrin glue, tetracycline, talc, and alcoholic iodine were performed in four separate groups. Flap fixation technique was applied in one group and those rats that did not receive any intervention constituted the control group. On the 10th postoperative day, seroma was aspirated under anesthesia, and the amount of seroma fluid was recorded. Seroma fluid was analyzed for interleukin 1-β, vascular endothelial growth factor, and C-reactive protein levels. Tissue samples were obtained from the skin overlaying the dissection area, the axilla, and the thoracic wall. Wound healing was evaluated with histopathological examination.

Results. Seroma volume was lower and the wound healing scores were the highest in the flap fixation group and the tetracycline group as compared to the control group. However, the alcoholic iodine group and the talc group had a greater amount of seroma (p < 0.05). There was no difference between the fibrin glue group and the control group.

Conclusions. In our mastectomy model, local application of alcoholic iodine and talc substances caused more wound site problems and postoperative seroma formation. While fibrin glue did not cause wound site problems, it did increase seroma formation. These three substances were determined to be inefficacious in postoperative seroma formation. Local tetracycline application and flap fixation technique were found to reduce postoperative seroma and benefit wound healing.

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