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, 37 (1), 57-60

Establishment of Supermicrosurgical Lymphaticovenular Anastomosis Model in Rat


Establishment of Supermicrosurgical Lymphaticovenular Anastomosis Model in Rat

Takumi Yamamoto et al. Microsurgery.


Background: Lymphaticovenular anastomosis (LVA) is becoming a choice of treatment for compression-refractory lymphedema. However, LVA requires highly sophisticated microsurgical technique called supermicrosurgery, and no training model for LVA has been developed. This study aimed to develop and evaluate feasibility of a new LVA model using rat thigh lymphatic vessels.

Methods: Ten Sprague-Dawley rats were used for the study. After preoperative indocyanine green (ICG) lymphography, lymphatic vessels in posteromedial aspect of the thigh were dissected. In right limbs, the largest lymphatic vessel was anastomosed to the short saphenous vein or its branch, and the remaining lymphatic vessels were ligated (LVA group). In left limbs, all lymphatic vessels were ligated (control group). Anastomosis patency was evaluated intraoperatively and at postoperative 7 days.

Results: Courses of lymphatic vessels in the thigh were constant; lymphatic vessels run along the short saphenous vein. The mean diameter of lymphatic vessel used for LVA was 0.240 ± 0.057 mm, and the mean diameter of vein was 0.370 ± 0.146 mm. All lymphatic vessels were translucent and very thin like human intact lymphatic vessels. In LVA group, intra- and post-operative anastomosis patency rates were 100% (10/10) based on ICG lymphography. In control group, intra- and post-operative patency rates were 0% (0/10).

Conclusions: Rat lymphatic vessels are thin, translucent, and fragile similar to intact human lymphatic vessels. The LVA model uses easily accessible lymphatic vessels in the thigh, and is useful for training of supermicrosurgical LVA. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Microsurgery 37:57-60, 2017.

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