Clinical Research| Volume 91, P155-160, April 2023

Free Jejunal Graft Interposition with Vascular Reconstruction in Patients Undergoing Pharyngo Laryngo Esophagectomy

Published:December 12, 2022DOI:


      • Free jejunal graft is a safe and effective method for pharyngo laryngo esophagectomy.
      • Early graft failure was observed in 6 patients (6.7%).
      • The cause of graft failure was congestion in all cases.
      • Postoperative anticoagulation therapy may be effective in preventing free jejunal graft necrosis.


      Pharyngo-esophageal reconstruction using free jejunal grafts has been widely used for the treatment of locally advanced carcinomas of the hypopharynx and cervical esophagus. However, the procedure is technically demanding and requires complex recontractions. The aim of this study was to evaluate our institutional outcomes of reconstruction using a free jejunal graft with vascular reconstruction in patients undergoing pharyngo laryngo esophagectomy with a multidisciplinary surgical team.


      There were 90 consecutive patients between October 2006 and February 2021. The mean age was 64.6 ± 10.3 years, and there were 76 male patients. Of 90 patients, 49 underwent preoperative chemotherapy and/or radiotherapy. Jejunal vessels were commonly anastomosed to the common carotid artery and the internal jugular vein (77.8% and 92.2%, respectively). Continuous intravenous infusion of heparin was used postoperatively.


      Necrosis of the graft was observed in 5 patients. An isolated revision of vein was necessary in 1 patient. In all cases of graft failure, heparin was not used postoperatively. On the other hand, among the patients without graft failure, heparin was used for about two-thirds of the patients and was significantly different (0% vs. 66%, P = 0.01).


      Free jejunal graft with vessel reconstruction is a safe and effective method for patients undergoing pharyngo laryngo esophagectomy. The position for the prevention of kinking as well anastomosis maneuver of vein is especially important. Moreover, early postoperative anticoagulation is essential.
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