Triple Arthrodesis Using External Ring Fixation and Arched-Wire Compression
An Evaluation of 87 Patients
From January 1995 to December 2000, 87 patients at a single medical center underwent triple arthrodesis using external rings and arched-wire compression as the method of fixation. A retrospective evaluation was conducted to assess the clinical results of this technique. Eighty-four patients (97%) achieved clinical and radiographic fusion in 6 to 8 weeks. All of the patients were partially weightbearing during the first postoperative week. Thirty-one patients (36%) developed a superficial infection at one or more wire insertion sites, and nine (10%) experienced dehiscence of an incision. Three patients (3%) developed an asymptomatic nonunion. This article describes the use of external ring fixation with arched-wire compression for triple arthrodesis and presents the findings from 87 patients who underwent this technique. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 94(1): 12-21, 2004)
It is important to have a full appreciation of lower-extremity anatomical relationships before undertaking diabetic foot surgery. We sought to evaluate the potential for communication of the flexor hallucis longus (FHL) tendon with other pedal tendons and plantar foot compartments at the master knot of Henry and to provide cadaveric images and computed tomographic (CT) scans of such communications. Computed tomography and subsequent anatomical dissection were performed on embalmed cadaveric limbs. Initially, 5 to 10 mL (1:4 dilution) of iohexol and normal saline was injected into the FHL sheath as it coursed between the two hallux sesamoids. Subsequently, CT scans were obtained in the axial plane using a multidetector CT scanner with sagittal and coronal reformatted images. The limbs were then dissected for specific evaluation of the known variable intertendinous connections between the FHL and flexor digitorum longus (FDL) and quadratus plantae (QP) muscles. One cadaver demonstrated retrograde flow of contrast into the four individual tendons of the FDL, with observation of a large intertendinous slip between the FHL and FDL on dissection. Another cadaver demonstrated contrast filling in the QP with an associated intertendinous slip between the FHL and QP on dissection. These results indicate that the master knot of Henry (the location in the plantar aspect of the midfoot where the FHL and FDL tendons decussate, with the FDL passing superficially over the FHL) has at least the potential to serve as one source of communication in diabetic foot infections from the medial plantar compartment and FHL to the central and lateral compartments via the FDL and to the rearfoot via the QP.
Diagnosis and Management of Onychomycosis
Perspectives from a Joint Podiatric Medicine–Dermatology Roundtable
Onychomycosis is a fungal infection, and, as such, one of the goals of treatment should be eradication of the infective agent. Despite this, in contrast to dermatologists, many podiatric physicians do not include antifungals in their onychomycosis treatment plans. Before initiating treatment, confirmation of mycologic status via laboratory testing (eg, microscopy with potassium hydroxide preparation, histopathology with periodic acid–Schiff staining, fungal culture, and polymerase chain reaction) is important; however, more podiatric physicians rely solely on clinical signs than do dermatologists. These dissimilarities may be due, in part, to differences between specialties in training, reimbursement patterns, or practice orientation, and to explore these differences further, a joint podiatric medicine–dermatology roundtable was convened. In addition, treatment options have been limited owing to safety concerns with available oral antifungals and relatively low efficacy with previously available topical treatments. Recently approved topical treatments—efinaconzole and tavaborole—offer additional options for patients with mild-to-moderate disease. Debridement alone has no effect on mycologic status, and it is recommended that it be used in combination with an oral or topical antifungal. There is little to no clinical evidence to support the use of lasers or over-the-counter treatments for onychomycosis. After a patient has achieved cure (absence of clinical signs or absence of fungus with minimal clinical signs), lifestyle and hygiene measures, prophylactic/maintenance treatment, and proactive treatment for tinea pedis, including in family members, may help maintain this status.
Toe amputation is the most common partial foot amputation. Controversy exists regarding whether to primarily close toe amputations or to leave them open for secondary healing. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the results of closed toe amputations in diabetic patients, with respect to wound healing, complications, and the need for further higher level amputation.
We retrospectively reviewed the results of 40 elective or semi-elective toe amputations with primary closure performed in 35 patients treated in a specialized diabetic foot unit. Patients with abscesses or necrotizing fasciitis were treated emergently and were excluded. Patients in whom clean margins could not be achieved due to extensive cellulitis or tenosynovitis and patients requiring vascular intervention were excluded as well. Outcome endpoints included wound healing at 3 weeks, delayed wound healing, or subsequent higher level amputation.
Out of 40 amputations, 38 healed well. Thirty amputations healed by the time of stitch removal at 3 weeks and eight had delayed healing. In two patients the wounds did not heal and subsequent higher level amputation was eventually required.
In carefully selected diabetic foot patients, primary closure of toe amputations is a safe surgical option. We do not recommend primary closure when infection control is not achieved or in patients requiring vascular reconstruction. Careful patient selection, skillful assessment of debridement margins and meticulous technique are required and may be offered by experienced designated surgeons in a specialized diabetic foot unit.
Verrucae (warts) are the most common viral infections of the skin, affecting 7% to 10% of the general population. Typically caused by human papillomavirus type 1, plantar warts manifest as benign proliferation of the epithelial cells on the feet. It has been cited that up to one-third of nongenital warts become recalcitrant, and biopsy is often required to confirm diagnosis and direct appropriate treatment. These treatments can vary from various types of oral medications, acids, ablative modalities, and injections. In this article, we present a case of a recalcitrant plantar wart that appeared to circumferentially spread from the initial site after first-line treatment and presumed resolution with the product cantharidin. The development of ring warts is a known complication associated with cantharidin use, with little described rationale to the presentation.
Integra bilayer wound matrix (IBWM) is a bilayer skin replacement system composed of a dermal regeneration layer and a temporary epidermal layer. It is used to treat various types of deep, large wounds via an inpatient procedure in an operating room. We sought to determine ease of use and effectiveness of IBWM in an outpatient clinical setting when treating diabetic foot ulcers. In addition, no epidermal autografting was performed in conjunction with the IBWM after silicone release, as is common in the inpatient setting.
This 12-week, single-arm, prospective pilot study was conducted in three outpatient clinics. Weekly evaluations included monitoring the wound for signs of infection during the 12-week follow-up phase.
Eleven patients with diabetic foot ulcers who met the inclusion and exclusion criteria were enrolled. One patient was discontinued from the study owing to noncompliance leading to a serious adverse event. Therefore, ten patients who received the study intervention were included in the per-protocol population reported herein. The mean patient age was 60.6 years, with an average 11-year history of diabetes mellitus. Each ulcer was located on the plantar aspect of the foot. No infection was reported during the study. Patients treated with IBWM showed progressive wound healing over time: the greatest mean wound reduction was approximately 95% in week 12. Seven of ten patients (70%) achieved complete wound closure by week 12. No recurrent ulcers were reported during follow-up.
These results are consistent with the hypothesis that IBWM is easy to use, safe, and effective when used on diabetic foot ulcers in an outpatient clinical setting without the secondary procedure of autografting for closure. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 103(4): 274–280, 2013)
Diabetic foot infections tend to lead to amputation. Partial first-ray resections are used to help salvage the foot and maintain bipedal ambulation. Losing the first metatarsophalangeal joint has biomechanical consequences that lead to further foot deformities and result in more proximal amputations of the ipsilateral limb, such as a transmetatarsal amputation.
We reviewed 48 patients (32 male and 16 female; mean age = 62.44) who underwent 50 partial first-ray resections between April 1, 2003, and July 31, 2009. These partial first-ray resections were done at various levels of the first metatarsal. We hypothesize that partial first-ray resections that require further bone resection will lead to poor biomechanics that can result in further amputation.
We found that out of 50 partial first-ray resections, 24 cases required further surgical intervention, 12 of which were a transmetatarsal amputation (TMA) (mean time between partial first-ray resection and TMA = 282.08 days). Forty-eight percent of patients did not require further surgical intervention and were considered a success.
Partial first-ray resections are not highly successful. Our study found a higher success rate compared to a previous study done by Cohen et al in 1991. Partial first-ray amputations can be a good initial procedure to salvage the foot and prolong a patient’s bipedal ambulatory status, thereby lowering the patient’s morbidity and mortality. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 102(5): 412–416, 2012)
Patients suffering from chronic kidney disease are at greater risk of perioperative and postoperative complications. There is no systematic review study demonstrating whether total joint arthroplasty can be safely performed in patients with chronic kidney disease.
A literature search was performed in the PubMed, Embase, Web of Science, China National Knowledge Infrastructure, Wanfang, and Cochrane Library databases for information from the earliest date of data collection to September of 2018. Studies comparing the perioperative and postoperative outcomes of no–chronic kidney dysfunction (CKD) patients with those of CKD patients were included. Statistical heterogeneity was quantitatively evaluated by means of the χ2 test, with significance set at P < .10 or I 2 > 50%.
Three articles consisting of 38,209 patients were included (35,363 no-CKD patients and 2,846 CKD patients). The results showed that CKD was related to a greater increase in postoperative infection rate, deep vein thrombosis, readmission, and mortality (P < .1). No differences in length of surgery, length of stay, pulmonary embolism, or revision were observed (P > .10).
Compared with no-CKD patients, CKD patients demonstrated an increased risk of perioperative and postoperative complications.
One of the more frequent pathologic conditions that podiatric physicians are confronted with is plantar verrucae. Plantar verrucae have been studied extensively in terms of morphological features and incidence in the population at large and in patients with human immunodeficiency virus infection. Solitary angiokeratomas can be morphologically similar to plantar verrucae, presenting as hyperkeratotic pedunculated lesions. We present a unique case study of a 40-year-old man with human immunodeficiency virus with a painful solitary angiokeratoma masquerading as plantar verrucae. The lesion demonstrated clinical signs consistent with those highlighted in the literature for verrucae, namely, showing as red and black lacunae, punctuated hyperkeratotic epidermis. We propose that solitary angiokeratomas should be an important part of a podiatric physician’s differential diagnosis in the lower extremity owing to the similarity of morphological features with plantar verrucae. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 100(6): 502–504, 2010)
There is an increased prevalence of foot ulceration in patients with diabetes, leading to hospitalization. Early wound closure is necessary to prevent further infections and, ultimately, lower-limb amputations. There is no current evidence stating that an elevated preoperative hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) level is a contraindication to skin grafting. The purpose of this review was to determine whether elevated HbA1c levels are a contraindication to the application of skin grafts in diabetic patients.
A retrospective review was performed of 53 consecutive patients who underwent split-thickness skin graft application to the lower extremity between January 1, 2012, and December 31, 2015. A uniform surgical technique was used across all of the patients. A comparison of HbA1c levels between failed and healed skin grafts was reviewed.
Of 43 surgical sites (41 patients) that met the inclusion criteria, 27 healed with greater than 90% graft take and 16 had a skin graft that failed. There was no statistically significant difference in HbA1c levels in the group that healed a skin graft compared with the group in which skin graft failed to adhere.
Preliminary data suggest that an elevated HbA1c level is not a contraindication to application of a skin graft. The benefits of early wound closure outweigh the risks of skin graft application in patients with diabetes.