Charcot arthropathy is an acute or subacute, often indolent, non-infectious or tumorous osteoarticular destruction of weightbearing skeletal structures in patients with reduced pain perception due to peripheral neuropathy. The authors present a rare case of progressive Charcot arthropathy of the first metatarsophalangeal joint with accompanying ulcer and foot deformity due to peripheral neuropathy. An arthrodesis of the first metatarsophalangeal joint with resection of the hypertrophic bone and osteophytes using a locking plate was performed. Also a condylectomy of the base of the proximal phalanx digitus II and III as well as a shortening osteotomy of the third metatarsal were conducted. The ulcer was debrided and primarily closed by suture. Mobilization was performed without weightbearing in a postoperative shoe for 6 weeks, the ulcer was completely healed and the arthrodesis had fused. Owing to the complexity of Charcot arthropathy careful preoperative evaluation, timing and dimension of surgery as well as treatment of associated comorbidities and sufficient postoperative care is important to reduce the complication rate and improve long-term results. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 102(2): 161–164, 2012)
Background: This study was undertaken to assess the benefits of negative-pressure wound therapy (NPWT) versus traditional wound therapies in reducing the incidence of lower-extremity amputations in patients with diabetic foot ulcers.
Methods: Administrative claims data for patients with diabetic foot ulcers from commercial payers (n = 3,524) and Medicare (n = 12,795) were retrospectively analyzed. Patients were divided into NPWT and control/traditional therapy groups on the basis of administrative codes. Risk-adjustment procedures were then performed to match patient risk categories (through total treatment costs) and wound severities (through debridement depth).
Results: The incidence of amputations in the NPWT groups was lower than that in the control groups. For the cost-based risk-adjustment analysis, amputation incidences with NPWT versus traditional therapy were 35% lower in the Medicare sample (10.8% versus 16.6%; P = .0077) and 34% lower in the commercial payer sample (14.1% versus 21.4%; P = .0951). Whereas overall amputation rates increased progressively with increasing wound debridement depth in both control groups, the same increasing trend did not occur in the NPWT groups.
Conclusions: Patients with diabetic foot ulcers in the Medicare sample treated with NPWT had a lower incidence of amputations than those undergoing traditional wound therapy; this finding was evident in wounds of varying depth in both populations studied. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 97(5): 351–359, 2007)
In contrast to the narrow indications for living skin equivalents, extracellular matrix biomaterials are clinically used in a wide range of wound-healing applications. Given the breadth of possible uses, the goal of this study was to retrospectively compile and analyze the clinical application and effectiveness of an extracellular matrix biomaterial derived from fetal bovine dermis (PriMatrix; TEI Biosciences, Boston, Massachusetts) in patients treated by a single physician and monitored postsurgically in an outpatient wound care center.
A retrospective medical record review was conducted of consecutive patients treated from January 2007 through January 2009 with meshed PriMatrix after sharp/surgical debridement and coverage with standard moist wound therapy dressings.
Twenty-nine patients and 34 wounds were compiled. All of the wounds were unresponsive to conservative treatment owing to complications, including infection, exposed bone or tendon, and other comorbidities known to delay healing. Wounds included 11 diabetic ulcers, 8 venous stasis ulcers, 10 nonhealing traumatic wounds, and 5 other chronic wounds. Thirty of 34 wounds healed, with four patients lost to follow-up. Mean time to healing for diabetic foot ulcers was 105 days with an average of 2.6 PriMatrix applications. Mean time to healing for venous, traumatic, and other chronic wounds was 74 to 82 days with an average of 1.2 to 1.4 PriMatrix applications.
In patients with comorbidities known to delay healing, the implantation of PriMatrix promoted the healing and, ultimately, full reepithelialization of otherwise unresponsive wounds of varied etiology, including those with complications of infection or exposed bone or tendon. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 102(3): 223–232, 2012)
Surgical intervention for chronic deformities and ulcerations has become an important component in the management of patients with diabetes mellitus. Such patients are no longer relegated to wearing cumbersome braces or footwear for deformities that might otherwise be easily corrected. Although surgical intervention in these often high-risk individuals is not without risk, the outcomes are fairly predictable when patients are properly selected and evaluated. In this brief review, we discuss the rationale and indications for diabetic foot surgery, focusing on the surgical decompression of deformities that frequently lead to foot ulcers. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 100(5): 369–384, 2010)
Verrucous skin lesions on the feet of diabetic patients in conjunction with a neuropathic foot ulcer is an uncommon incident. Currently, there are approximately 20 reported cases in the literature. Herein we report two cases of verrucous lesions superimposing a chronic diabetic ulcer. Patients failed several conservative treatments, and several biopsies were performed with inconclusive results, suggesting possible underlying verrucous carcinoma. Given the possibility of underlying malignancy, both patients were treated with wide excision, and both were negative for malignancy, thus confirming verrucous skin lesions on the feet in diabetic neuropathy. We also summarize the current literature on verrucous skin lesions on the feet in diabetic neuropathy.
External thermoregulation using noncontact normothermic wound therapy accelerates wound closure by second intention in areas of existing osteomyelitis before surgical excision compared with standard wound care. This pilot study consisted of two arms. The control arm received standard wound care, which resulted in complete ulcer healing at an average of 127 days. The treatment arm received noncontact normothermic wound therapy, which resulted in complete ulcer healing at an average of 59 days, or 54% faster than in the control arm. This new treatment allows the physician to decrease the rate of limb loss and recurrent osteomyelitis by decreasing the morbidity of bone reinfection through the wound bed. There have been no published studies or case presentations addressing thermoregulation in the management of wounds associated with osteomyelitis. Although noncontact normothermic wound therapy is not a direct treatment for osteomyelitis, this new treatment option results in significantly accelerated healing of wounds associated with osteomyelitis. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 93(1): 18-22, 2003)
Biochemical properties of the amniotic membrane help modulate inflammation and enhance soft-tissue healing. In controlled trials, the efficacy of dehydrated human amnion/chorion membrane (dHACM) allografts has been established. Our purpose is to describe our experience with using dHACM to treat nonhealing wounds of various etiologies.
We conducted a retrospective review of deidentified data from 117 consecutive patients treated in an outpatient clinic with dHACM allografts with wounds of various etiologies over 2 years. The decision to use advanced wound-care treatments is based on rate of healing observed after initiation of standard wound care and patient risk factors. Eligibility for treatments such as amniotic membrane allografts includes wounds without 50% reduction after 4 weeks, or earlier in patients deemed to be at high risk for nonhealing or with a history of chronic wounds. In micronized or sheet formulation, dHACM is applied to the wound weekly after sharp/mechanical debridement as necessary, and wound-care practices appropriate for wound type and location are continued.
Thirty-four percent of allograft recipients had diabetic foot ulcers, 25% had venous leg ulcers, 20% had surgical wounds, 14% had pressure ulcers, 6% had ischemic wounds, and 2% had traumatic wounds. Complete healing occurred in 91.1% of treated patients, with a mean ± SD number of weekly applications per healed wound of 5.1 ± 4.2.
In addition to wounds of diabetic origin, dHACM can significantly expedite healing in refractory wounds of varying etiologies.
Remote ischemic conditioning involves the use of a blood pressure cuff or similar device to induce brief (3–5 min) episodes of limb ischemia. This, in turn, seems to activate a group of distress signals that has shown the potential ability to improve healing of the heart muscle and other organ systems. Until recently, this has not been tested in people with diabetic foot ulcers. The purpose of this review was to provide background on remote ischemic conditioning and recent data to potentially support its use as an adjunct to healing diabetic foot ulcers and other types of tissue loss. We believe that this inexpensive therapy has the potential to be deployed and incorporated into a variety of other therapies to prime patients for healing and to reduce morbidity in patients with this common, complex, and costly complication.
Background: Walking at various speeds and durations may result in different peak plantar pressure (PPP). However, there is no study comparing the effect of walking speeds and durations on PPP. The purpose of this study was to explore whether different walking speeds and durations significantly change PPP and establish a normal response in healthy people.
Methods: An in-shoe plantar pressure system was used to measure PPP under the first toe, first metatarsal, second metatarsal, and heel regions in 12 healthy, young people. All participants performed six walking trials at three speeds (3, 6, and 9 km/h) and for two durations (10 and 20 min). The 3 × 2 two-way analysis of variance was used to examine the main effects of speeds and durations and their interaction.
Results: The results showed that walking speeds significantly affected PPP and that walking duration did not. No interaction between the walking speed and duration was observed. Peak plantar pressure values under the first toe and the first metatarsal head were significantly higher (P < .05) at 9 km/h (509.1 ± 314.2 kPa and 591.4 ± 302.4 kPa, respectively) than at 3 km/h (275.4 ± 168.7 kPa and 369.4 ± 205.4 kPa, respectively) after 10-min walking.
Conclusions: People at risk for foot ulcers may use slow and brisk walking for exercise to reduce PPP, thus reducing risk for foot ulcers. Our study demonstrated that slow running at 9 km/h significantly increases PPP.
Background: We used a model of lower-extremity ulceration to determine the impact of a podiatric lead limb preservation team on identified relationships among risk factors, predictors of ulceration, amputation, and clinical outcomes of lower-extremity disease in patients with diabetes mellitus.
Methods: A total of 485 patients with diabetes mellitus were randomly selected from the diabetic population and included in this retrospective cohort study. Patients were then stratified into two groups: those who received specialty podiatric medical care and those who did not. Data covering a 5-year period were collected using electronic medical records and chart abstraction to capture detailed treatment characteristics, ulcer status, and surgical outcomes.
Results: Overall, the frequencies of inpatient and outpatient encounters and the durations of hospital stays were significantly greater with increasing wound depth and in the presence of infection. In addition, the overall ulcer incidence was greater in patients with callus (34.3% versus 10.3%, P < .0001) with and without neuropathy (20.4% and 4.1%, P < .0001). Among patients treated in a specialty multidiscipline podiatric medical setting, the proportion of all amputations that were “minor” was significantly increased (33.7% versus 67.3%, P = .0006), and survival was significantly improved (19.5% versus 7.7%, P < .0001).
Conclusions: Early identification of individuals at increased risk for lower-extremity ulceration and subsequent referral for advanced multidiscipline podiatric medical specialty care may decrease rates of ulceration and proximal amputation and improve survival in patients with diabetes mellitus who are at high risk for ulceration and limb loss. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 100(4): 235–241, 2010)