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Eloesser flap

An Eloesser flap is a single stage procedure for the treatment of severe pleural empyema, and involves a U-shaped incision and the resection of a number of subjacent posterolateral ribs. The U-shaped flap is then folded into the pleural space reating a permanent communication. 

Unlike the Clagett procedure, from which it is radiographic difficult to distinguish, the Eloesser flap is not reversible. 


Described by Leo Eloesser in 1935 while treating tuberculous empyema in San Francisco. 

  • Dr Leo Eloesser (1881 - 1976) American thoracic surgeon. 

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