By Jan Bellows, DVM, Dipl. AVDC, ABVP
A flap is tissue that is raised from its bed and left attached on at least one side. The base through which the attachment and circulation is maintained is called the pedicle. In oral surgical procedures, flaps allow exposure of the underlying alveolus and root surface, while preserving attached gingiva to facilitate suturing in a fashion that reduces or eliminates the periodontal pocket and promotes reattachment to the root surface in cases of mucogingival surgery.
Extracting teeth due to advanced periodontal disease is undoubtedly the most common surgical procedure performed in companion animal practice. As such, a solid understanding of flaps is warranted.
Partial- or split-thickness (mucosal) flaps leave the per...
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