Although numerous studies suggest the benefit of electrical stimulation (E-Stim) therapy to accelerate wound healing, the underlying mechanism of action is still debated. In this pilot study, we examined the potential effectiveness of lower-extremity E-Stim therapy to improve tissue perfusion in patients with diabetic foot ulcers.
Thirty-eight patients with diabetic foot ulcers underwent 60 min of active E-Stim therapy on acupuncture points above the level of the ankle joint using a bioelectric stimulation technology platform. Perfusion changes in response to E-Stim were assessed by measuring skin perfusion pressure (SPP) at baseline and during 30 and 60 min of therapy; retention was assessed 10 min after therapy. Tissue oxygen saturation (SatO2) was measured using a noninvasive near-infrared camera.
Skin perfusion pressure increased in response to E-Stim therapy (P = .02), with maximum improvement observed at 60 min (11%; P = .007) compared with baseline; SPP reduced 10 min after therapy but remained higher than baseline (9%; P = .1). Magnitude of improvement at 60 min was negatively correlated with baseline SPP values (r = –0.45; P = .01), suggesting that those with lower perfusion could benefit more from E-Stim therapy. Similar trends were observed for SatO2, with statistically significant improvement for a subsample (n = 16) with moderate-to-severe peripheral artery disease.
This study provides early results on the feasibility and effectiveness of E-Stim therapy to improve skin perfusion and SatO2. The magnitude of benefit is higher in those with poorer skin perfusion. Also, the effects of E-Stim could be washed out after stopping therapy, and regular daily application might be required for effective benefit in wound healing.
The literature is scanty regarding the biomechanical effects of different thread configurations on the initial stability of ankle arthrodesis. This study aims to compare the initial stability of tibiotalar fusion site in ankle arthrodesis using cannulated screws with different thread designs.
We biomechanically tested under cyclic loading the effects of different screw combinations on the initial stability of ankle arthrodesis. A total of 28 synthetic ankle models were divided into four groups: two partially threaded cancellous screws (group A), partially and fully threaded cancellous screws (group B), a partially threaded cancellous screw with a headless compression screw (group C), and a fully threaded cancellous screw and a headless compression screw (group D). Biomechanical variables including ultimate failure load, initial stiffness, ultimate stiffness, and failure angulation were analyzed.
There were no differences in any of the biomechanical variables among the four groups (P = .41 for ultimate failure load, P = .079 for initial stiffness, P = .084 for ultimate stiffness, and P = .937 for failure angulation).
Combinations of different cannulated screws showed similar results in terms of the stability and stiffness of the tibiotalar fusion site.
Eumycetoma, caused by fungi, is a neglected tropical disease. It is endemic in the “mycetoma belt” countries but rare in North America. We report a case of pedal eumycetoma in the state of Maryland. A 51-year-old male immigrant from Guatemala presented with multiple, enlarging nodules on the dorsal surface of his left great toe present for 1 year, and a new one in the left arch area present for 6 months. The nodular lesions were surgically excised in two separate operations. Pathologic evaluation of all nodules revealed eumycetomas characterized by the Splendore-Hoeppli phenomenon, showing an amorphous eosinophilic center filled with numerous fungal hyphae, observed on periodic acid-Schiff–stained slides, with a surrounding cuff of neutrophils. Polymerase chain reaction–based sequencing identified Cladosporium cladosporioides in the tissues. The patient was further treated with oral fluconazole for 2 months. The patient recovered well postoperatively and had no recurrence at 20-month follow-up. In conclusion, even though eumycetoma is regarded as a rare disease in North America, its incidence may be higher than reported because of millions of immigrants from endemic regions in the United States, which highlights the need to raise awareness of this devastating disease in the medical community. Eumycetoma needs to be differentiated from other infectious and noninfectious benign and malignant lesions. Optimal treatment includes surgical excision with antifungal therapy.
Foot and nail care specialists spend a great portion of their day using nail drills to reduce nail thickness and smooth foot calluses. This process generates a large amount of dust, some of which is small enough to breathe in and deposit into the deepest regions of the respiratory tract, potentially causing health problems. Foot and nail dust often contains fungi, from both fungus-infected and healthy-appearing nails. Although the majority of healthy individuals can tolerate inhaled fungi, the immune systems of older, immunocompromised, and allergy-prone individuals often react using the inflammatory T helper cell type 2 pathway, leading to mucus overproduction, bronchoconstriction, and, in severe cases, lung tissue damage. To protect vulnerable podiatry professionals, wearing a surgical mask, using a water spray suppression system on nail drills, installing air filtration systems, and considering drilling technique can help reduce exposure to nail dust.
Many indirect clinical techniques have been developed to assess foot posture; however, there is relatively little research investigating the relationships among these techniques. We investigated the relationships among the most commonly used clinical measures of foot posture—Foot Posture Index-6 (FPI-6), navicular drop (NDP), navicular drift (NDT), and static and dynamic arch indices (SAI and DAI)—in individuals with normal foot posture and those with pronated foot.
Sixty-three individuals with FPI-6 scores of 0 to 12 were included. A digital caliper was used to measure NDP and NDT; SAI and DAI were measured by electronic pedobarography. Assessments were applied on the dominant foot. Pearson correlation coefficients were calculated to determine the relationships among measures. Participants were classified into two groups, pronated foot (n = 33) and normal foot posture (n = 30), based on FPI-6 scores, providing a multisegmental and multiplanar assessment. The independent-samples t test was used to compare groups regarding NDP, NDT, SAI, and DAI.
We found a high correlation between NDP and FPI-6 (r = 0.754) and between NDP and NDT (r = 0.778) (all P < .001). A moderate correlation was found between NDT and FPI-6 (r = 0.599) and between DAI and SAI (r = 0.519) (all P < .001). A negligible correlation was found between NDP and DAI (r = 0.268; P = .033). Furthermore, NDP, NDT, and DAI values were higher in individuals with pronated foot compared with those with normal posture (P < .001 for NDP and NDT; P = .022 for DAI), whereas SAI values were not (P = .837).
These results suggest that there are moderate-to-strong relationships among FPI-6, NDP, and NDT and between SAI and DAI. The NDP, NDT, and DAI are suitable for the classification of foot posture based on FPI-6 scores. This study can guide clinicians and researchers to associate the foot posture measures with each other.
Surgical management of hallux rigidus using a polyvinyl alcohol synthetic cartilage implant has gained popularity among foot and ankle surgeons. Although uncommon, appropriate diagnosis and management of a periprosthetic implant infection is critical in limiting morbidity. We present a case report and staged technique for converting a first metatarsal synthetic cartilage hemiarthroplasty to arthrodesis in the setting of a periprosthetic joint infection.
Human amniotic membrane contains growth factors and cytokines that promote epithelial cell migration and proliferation, stimulate metabolic processes that lead to collagen synthesis, and attract fibroblasts, while also reducing pain and inflammation. Randomized studies have shown effectiveness of micronized dehydrated human amnion/chorion membrane (mdHACM) allograft injection in treatment of plantar fasciitis. We present our experience and short-term outcomes with using mdHACM injection as a treatment for Achilles tendinopathy.
Retrospective case series of patients with Achilles tendinopathy treated with mdHACM by a single physician. Participants had at least two follow-up visits within 45 days of mdHACM injection. Outcomes examined included change in reported level of pain during the 45-day observation period and treatment-associated adverse events.
Follow-up data were available for 32 mdHACM-treated patients. At treatment initiation, 97% of patients reported severe (66%) or moderate (31%) pain. At the first follow-up visit (mean ± SD of 8.1 ± 2.7 days postinjection), 27 patients (84%) reported improvement in pain levels, although 37% of patients continued to report severe (6%) or moderate (31%) pain. At the second follow-up visit (mean ± SD of 23.1 ± 6.2 days postinjection), no patients reported severe pain and one reported moderate pain. Within 45 days of mdHACM injection, complete symptom resolution was reported by 66% of treated patients (n = 21), with the remaining 34% (n = 11) reporting symptom improvement but not complete resolution. Two patients reported calf or quadricep pain or tightness after injection.
In our experience, mdHACM injection reduced or eliminated pain in all 32 patients with follow-up data.
Drop foot is a crippling condition that often requires surgical intervention to restore functional dorsiflexion. Although transfer of the posterior tibial (PT) tendon has been well described for the treatment of drop foot, there is no consensus on whether tendon transfers affecting the ankle joint sufficiently restore functional status for daily activities. In addition, most studies have focused on drop foot caused by peripheral nerve disorders. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the functional outcomes and patient satisfaction following PT tendon transfer for the correction of drop foot resulting from both peripheral and central neurologic causes.
Patients with drop foot who underwent a PT tendon transfer were followed for a minimum of 1 year and investigated retrospectively. Outcome measures included the American Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Society ankle and hindfoot scoring system, a patient satisfaction questionnaire, postoperative ankle range of motion, and postoperative ambulatory status.
We evaluated 15 feet in 14 patients at a median follow-up of 50 months. The median postoperative American Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Society ankle and hindfoot score was 85.0. Thirteen patients (92.9%) reported that they would undergo the procedure again. The median postoperative passive ankle dorsiflexion was 5.0°, and the median postoperative passive ankle plantarflexion was 30.0°. Thirteen patients (92.9%) were able to ambulate postoperatively. Ten (71.4%) ambulated without the use of an ankle-foot orthosis (AFO), and three (21.4%) ambulated with the use of an AFO. Overall, orthoses were able to be discontinued in 73.3% of the cases.
Our results suggest that the PT tendon transfer is an effective procedure for the treatment of drop foot that can improve the patient's functional status and ability to ambulate. The majority of patients were able to discontinue the use of their AFO postoperatively.
Crossing the barrier of an open physis by primary aneurysmal bone cyst is an exceptional phenomenon. We present a rare case of primary active aneurysmal bone cyst of the distal tibia in a 15-year-old boy in whom the lesion had crossed the open lateral distal tibia physis. The diagnosis was confirmed by radiographs, computed tomography, magnetic resonance imaging, and histopathologic findings. The lesion was successfully treated by extended curettage and allograft impaction. The patient was asymptomatic when last seen at 30 months.
Systemic lupus erythematosus is an autoimmune disorder that affects several organs and systems in the human body. Digital gangrene is known to be a rare and severe complication of systemic lupus erythematosus that could lead to amputation. We report a case of an adolescent who presented with an autoimmune disorder and multiple comorbidities and developed gangrenous toes.