What Are The Vascular Risks To Temporal Artery Ligation?

Q: Dr. Eppley, what the risks in temporal artery ligation in  stopping blood flow in this artery.  In other words, what is impacted by loosing blood flow (forehead/scalp skin impacts, loose of hair, risk of stroke, other)?

A: This is a common concern that, fortunately, has no anatomic basis. The arteries that feed the scalp are not endpoints but actually connect with the arteries from the opposite side in what is called an extensive anastomotic network. Thus you really can’t shut off the blood flow to the scalp almost no matter what you do. It is these anatomic anastomoses which makes it necessary in temporal artery ligation to shut off the inflow and the backflow from the visible artery locations for it to work in decreasing their visibility.

Dr. Barry Eppley

World Renowned Plastic Surgeon