Sexual and functional long-term outcomes following advanced pelvic cancer and reconstruction using vertical rectus abdominis myocutaneous and gluteal myocutaneous flap

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Introduction: After extensive pelvic surgery for cancer two flap types are used at Skåne University Hospital (SUS), Sweden for perineal reconstruction: vertical rectus abdominis myocutaneous flap and gluteal flap with or without vaginal reconstruction. The objective was to study the long-term outcomes in patients treated for advanced pelvic cancer receiving a flap. Method: Patients with pelvic cancer subjected to surgery including perineal reconstruction between January 2010 and August 2016 at SUS were included retrospectively. Participating patients were scheduled for an out-patient visit. Questionnaires addressing quality of life, (QLQ-C30 and EQ-5D) and sexual function (FSFI and IIEF) were filled in. Sensitivity test, using monofilaments on the gluteal/posterior thigh area, neovaginal measurements using silicon gauges and muscular functionality tests (timed stands test and stairs test) were performed. Results: Thirty-six (24 women, 12 males) out of 71 invited patients conceded participation. Patients scored a median of 85/100 regarding global health using EQ-5D. All women reported sexual dysfunction and 75% (9/12) of men reported severe erectile dysfunction. Neovaginal measurements showed adequate reconstructions. Sensitivity test implied decreased sensitivity on the operated side compared to the unoperated side in patients with gluteal flap. Both physical tests demonstrated adequate muscular functionality in everyday life activities after reconstructions using gluteal flap. Conclusion: This long-term follow up after extensive surgery treating pelvic cancer with perineal flap reconstruction implies high quality of life, good muscular functionality and adequate neovaginal measurements. However sexual function is impaired among both sexes and sensitivity in the surgical area of the gluteal flap is decreased.


External organisations
  • Skåne University Hospital
  • Lund University
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Surgery


  • Colorectal cancer, Long-term outcome, Musculocutaneous flap, Perineal reconstruction, Quality of life, Sexual function
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)858-865
JournalEuropean Journal of Surgical Oncology
Issue number4
Early online date2020
Publication statusPublished - 2021
Publication categoryResearch