A prospective, blinded study was designed to determine whether placement of a microsuture in epithelial defects created on canine vocal folds results in histologically demonstrable improved healing. Epithelial defects similar to those created during microflap removal were made by means of traditional microsurgical techniques on both vocal folds of 4 adult dogs. One vocal fold defect on each dog was then closed with a single microsuture placed through the laryngoscope. The larynges were harvested approximately 6 weeks later, and blinded histologic quantification of scar formation was performed. Microsutures resulted in less scarring in all but 1 of the larynges studied. Unsutured vocal folds exhibited a 75% larger average scar cross-sectional area. Although the sample size was insufficient to establish statistical significance, the observed difference in scar formation between microsutured and unsutured vocal folds suggests that primary closure with a microsuture in the canine model results in less scarring than when healing occurs by secondary intention.
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