Nerve Decompression After Diabetic Foot Ulceration May Protect Against Recurrence
A 3-Year Controlled, Prospective Analysis
Nerve entrapment, common in diabetes, is considered an associated phenomenon without large consequence in the development of diabetes complications such as ulceration, infection, amputation, and early mortality. This prospective analysis, with controls, of the ulcer recurrence rate after operative nerve decompression (ND) offers an objective perspective on the possibility of frequent occult nerve entrapment in the diabetic foot complication cascade.
A multicenter cohort of 42 patients with diabetic sensorimotor polyneuropathy, failed pharmacologic pain control, palpable pulses, and at least one positive Tinel's nerve percussion sign was treated with unilateral multiple lower-leg external neurolyses for the indication of pain. All of the patients had healed at least one previous ipsilateral plantar diabetic foot ulceration (DFU). This group was retrospectively evaluated a minimum of 12 months after operative ND and again 3 years later. The recurrence risk of ipsilateral DFU in that period was prospectively analyzed and compared with new ulcer occurrence in the contralateral intact, nonoperated control legs.
Operated legs developed two ulcer recurrences (4.8%), and nine contralateral control legs developed ulcers (21.4%), requiring three amputations. Ulcer risk is 1.6% per patient per year in ND legs and 7% in nonoperated control legs (P = .048).
Adding operative ND at lower-leg fibro-osseous tunnels to standard postulcer treatment resulted in a significantly diminished rate of subsequent DFU in neuropathic high-risk feet. This is prospective, objective evidence that ND can provide valuable ongoing protection from DFU recurrence, even years after primary ulcer healing.
The Percutaneous Surgical Approach for Repairing Acute Achilles Tendon Rupture
A Comprehensive Outcome Assessment
Background: Treatment modalities for acute Achilles tendon rupture can be divided into operative and nonoperative. The main concern with nonoperative treatment is the high incidence of repeated ruptures; operative treatment is associated with risk of infection, sural nerve injury, and wound-healing sequelae. We assessed our experience with a percutaneous operative approach for treating acute Achilles tendon rupture.
Methods: The outcomes of percutaneous surgery in 29 patients (25 men; age range, 24–58 years) who underwent percutaneous surgery for Achilles tendon rupture between 1997 and 2004 were retrospectively evaluated. Their demographic data, subjective and objective evaluation findings, and isokinetic evaluation results were retrieved, and they were assessed with the modified Boyden score and the American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society Ankle-Hindfoot Scale.
Results: All 29 patients demonstrated good functional outcome, with no- to mild-limitations in recreational activities and high patient satisfaction. Mean follow-up was 31.8 months. Changes in ankle range of motion in the operated leg were minimal. Strength and power testing revealed a significant difference at 90°/sec for plantarflexion power between the injured and healthy legs but no difference at 30° and 240°/sec or in dorsiflexion. The mean modified Boyden score was 74.3, and the mean Ankle-Hindfoot Scale score was 94.5.
Conclusions: Percutaneous surgery for Achilles tendon rupture is easily executed and has excellent functional results and low complication rates. It is an appealing alternative to either nonoperative or open surgery treatments. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 100(4): 270–275, 2010)
The skin on human feet presents unique environments for the proliferation of potentially pathogenic commensals. This study examined microflora changes on healthy intact skin under a semiocclusive dressing on the medial longitudinal arch of the foot to determine changes in growth, distribution, and frequency of microflora under the dressing.
Nine human participants wore a low-adherent, absorbent, semiocclusive dressing on the medial longitudinal arch of the left foot for 2 weeks. An identical location on the right foot was swabbed and used as a control. Each foot was swabbed at baseline, week 1, and week 2. The swabs were cultured for 48 hours. Visual identification, Gram staining, DNase test agar, and a latex slide agglutination test were used to identify genera and species.
Microflora growth was categorized as scant (0–10 colony-forming units [CFU]), light (11–50 CFU), moderate (51–100 CFU), or heavy (>100 CFU). Scant and light growth decreased and moderate and heavy growth increased under the dressing compared with the control. Seven different genera of bacteria were identified. Coagulase-negative Staphylococcus spp appeared most frequently, followed by
Changes in microflora distribution, frequency, and growth were found under the dressing, supporting historical studies. Microflora changes were identified as an increase in bioburden and reduction in diversity. The application of similar methods, using more sophisticated identification and analysis techniques and a variety of dressings, could lead to a better understanding of bacterial and fungal growth under dressings, informing better dressing selection to assist the healing process of wounds and prevent infection.
A Pragmatic, Single-Center, Prospective, Randomized Controlled Trial of Adjunct Hemoglobin-Mediated Granulox Topical Oxygen Therapy Twice Weekly for Foot Ulcers
Results of the Hemoglobin Application to Wounds Study
Achieving timely healing of foot ulcers can help avoid complications such as infection and amputation; topical oxygen therapy has shown promise in achieving this. We evaluated the clinical effectiveness of Granulox, a hemoglobin spray device designed to deliver oxygen to the surface of wounds, for the healing of foot ulcers.
We conducted a single-center, prospective, randomized controlled trial comparing standard of care (once-weekly podiatric medical clinic visits) versus standard care plus adjunct Granulox therapy twice weekly in adults with foot ulcers. After a 2-week screening phase, patients in whom the index wound had healed by less than 50% were randomized 1:1. Outcome measures were collated during the trial phase at 6 and 12 weeks.
Of 79 patients enrolled, 38 were randomized. After 12 weeks, the median percentage wound size reduction compared with the size of the ulcer at the start of the trial phase was 100% for the control arm and 48% for the Granulox arm (P = .21, Mann-Whitney U test). In the former, eight of 14 foot ulcers had healed; in the latter, four of 15 (P = .14, Fisher exact test). In the control arm, two amputations and one withdrawal occurred, whereas in the Granulox arm, one unrelated death and five withdrawals were recorded.
We could not replicate the favorable healing associated with use of Granulox as published by others. Differences in wound chronicity and frequency of Granulox application might have influenced differences in study results. Granulox might perform best when used as an adjunct for treatment of chronic wounds at least 8 weeks old.
Background: Assessing implanted biological reinforcement graft success in soft-tissue repairs is typically limited to noninvasive measurements and functional outcome measures. However, there are times when a histologic snapshot of the graft incorporation may be possible owing to a nongraft-related postoperative complication, such as hardware failure.
Methods: We histologically evaluated a 6-month biopsy sample from an Achilles tendon repair augmented with an acellular human dermal matrix (AHDM). A 57-year-old woman was treated for Haglund’s deformity of the Achilles tendon. The Achilles tendon was fixed to the calcaneus using a plate, and an AHDM was used to augment the primary repair of the tendon. At 6 months, the hardware was removed owing to prominence, and a biopsy of the AHDM was performed. The specimen was prepared and stained using hematoxylin and eosin, Verhoeff-van Gieson, Movat’s pentachrome, and toluidine blue stains.
Results: Visually, the graft appeared normal and incorporated with the native tendon. No repeated tear was observed, and results of tests for infection were negative. Histologically, the graft was infiltrated predominantly with fibroblasts and demonstrated numerous blood vessels. Positive proteoglycan staining in the AHDM and at sites of vascularity indicated probable transformation to tendon-like tissue.
Conclusions: These histologic findings suggest that the AHDM is highly biocompatible, supports revascularization and repopulation with noninflammatory host cells, and becomes incorporated by surrounding tendon tissue. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 99(2): 104–107, 2009)
Early military investigations of blister treatment using tissue adhesives have shown promise, finding that these agents provide pain relief, prevent infection, and allow continuation of recruit training. A trial was conducted to compare a 2-octylcyanoacrylate treatment with military standard therapy. Patients were recruited during foot evaluation at the end of a 10-km military road march. Seventy-five patients were screened, and 51 were enrolled. Twenty-six patients received 2-octylcyanoacrylate and 25 received standard treatment. A total of 80 blisters were treated (40 in each group). The mean (SD) blister size in the 2-octylcyanoacrylate group was 12.7 (6.2) mm and in the standard group was 12.0 (5.7) mm. There were no statistically significant differences in any of the baseline variables. Baseline and repeated-measures visual analog scale scores demonstrated no statistically significant differences in initial or repeat pain scores. Both groups showed a similar change across time, with a nonsignificant trend toward improvement in the standard therapy group at 10 min (28.5 versus 24.9) and in the 2-octylcyanoacrylate group at 3 days (42.9 versus 50.1). Mean Likert scores were similar, indicating no difference in patient satisfaction. Time to resumption of normal activity was similar, with one patient in each group unable to return to activity at the time of follow-up. There was a trend toward an increased proportion of patients in the 2-octylcyanoacrylate group who were able to return to normal activity within 48 hours, but this did not reach statistical significance. 2-Octylcyanoacrylate was associated with a greater degree of procedural discomfort. No infected blisters were noted in either group. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 96(3): 232–237, 2006)
Closed reduction and percutaneous pinning, open reduction and internal fixation, and primary arthrodesis are procedures used in the surgical treatment of calcaneal fractures. This study presents short-term clinical and radiologic results of patients with calcaneal fractures treated by closed indirect reduction with Endobutton-assisted minimally invasive osteosynthesis.
Twenty-one feet of 18 patients (four women and 14 men) with calcaneal fractures were retrospectively analyzed. Böhler and Gissane angles were measured from the preoperative, postoperative, and latest follow-up lateral radiographs of the feet. American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society (AOFAS) scores were used for the 6-month and latest follow-up clinical assessments.
The mean preoperative Böhler angle of 17.1° was corrected to a mean of 20.4° postoperatively. The mean value of this angle measured at the time of latest follow-up was 21.3°. The mean preoperative and postoperative Gissane angles were 116° and 117.8°, respectively. The mean value of this angle measured at the time of latest follow-up was 117.4°. The mean 6-month postoperative AOFAS score was 59.8 points. The mean AOFAS score at the time of latest follow-up (79.1 points) was significantly higher than the mean score 6 months postoperatively (P < .001). Regarding the latest follow-up AOFAS scores, four were poor, four were moderate, ten were good, and three were excellent.
With a low learning curve and satisfactory clinical outcomes, this technique can be used in acute, edematous cases with soft-tissue injuries to avoid calcaneal enlargement, infection, and soft-tissue problems.
We describe a retrospective study that uses the Broström-type surgical procedure with modifications that augment deficient and torn ligaments with acellular human dermal grafts. At the onset of this study, the most prevalent dermal graft available to us was GraftJacket (Wright Medical Technology, Arlington, Tennessee). Greater than 50% of the study participants were grafted with this product, but more recently other equally effective human dermal grafts have been used with no apparent difference.
Thirty-five lateral ankle stabilization procedures were performed in the past 6 years on 33 patients. Eight patients were considered athletes (mean age, 23 years). The balance of the study group consisted of sedentary patients (mean age, 41 years). The mean patient body mass index (calculated as the weight in kilograms divided by the square of the height in meters) was 31.
All of the patients were satisfied with their results, with no recurrent instability. Two patients in this group went on to have contralateral ankle stabilization in a similar manner owing to their satisfaction. Complications included two soft-tissue infections.
Lateral ankle stabilization using acellular human dermal graft augmentation is a useful tool in the surgical treatment of ankle instability. This procedure offers distinct advantages over traditional methods of ankle repair and can be performed with relatively limited surgical exposure. Ease of operation, consistent results, and limited patient morbidity should allow surgeons to use this procedure independently or adjunctively to improve surgical outcomes.
Pigmented villonodular synovitis (PVNS) is a rare disorder around the ankle joint. The optimal treatment for diffuse-type PVNS is still controversial because of the high incidence of recurrence. We present the clinical features of our patients and review the current diagnostic and treatment modalities.
Five patients with PVNS located around the ankle were surgically treated. In three patients, diffuse PVNS arose from the ankle joint, and in the other two it arose from the calcaneocuboid and intercuneiform joints. The average follow-up time after surgery was 2.9 years (range, 2–4.6 years).
The average time between onset of pain and diagnosis of PVNS was 6.4 years (range, 4–10 years). Arthrotomic tumor resection was performed in all of the patients. In the three patients with ankle joint PVNS, both medial and lateral approaches were used. One patient experienced mild infection at the surgical site, but this healed conservatively. No tumor recurrences had occurred after minimum follow-up of 2 years, although mild pain persisted in the three patients with ankle PVNS.
Diagnosis of diffuse PVNS is frequently delayed due to vague symptoms and variable growth patterns. Orthopedic clinicians should be aware of the existence of this lesion, and it should be suspected in patients with persistent ankle swelling. To prevent tumor recurrence, accurate evaluation of tumor location and careful operative planning are mandatory. A combined surgical approach involving medial and lateral incision is necessary to expose the entire joint cavity.
Diabetic foot ulcer (DFU) is well managed by infection control, euglycemic state, and debridement of the ulcer followed by appropriate dressing and off-loading of the foot. Studies show that approximately 90% of DFUs that are properly off-loaded heal in nearly 6 weeks. Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) serves as a growth factor agonist and has mitogenic and chemotactic properties that help in DFU healing. We sought to evaluate the efficacy of local application of PRP with respect to healing rate and ulcer area reduction in treating DFUs.
Sixty noninfected patients with DFUs (plantar surface area, ≤20 cm2; Meggitt-Wagner grades 1 and 2) were randomized to receive normal saline dressing (control group [CG]) or PRP dressing (study group [SG]) along with total-contact casting for 6 weeks or until complete ulcer healing, whichever was earlier. Healing rate and change in ulcer area were evaluated weekly.
Mean ± SD ulcer area at baseline was 4.96 ± 2.89 cm2 (CG) and 5.22 ± 3.82 cm2 (SG) (P = .77), decreasing to 1.15 ± 1.35 cm2 (CG) and 0.96 ± 1.53 cm2 (SG) (P = .432) at 6 weeks. Mean ± SD percentage reduction in healing area at 6 weeks was 81.72% ± 17.2% (CG) and 85.98% ± 13.42% (SG) (P = .29). Mean ± SD healing rate at 6 weeks was 0.64 ± 0.36 cm2 (CG) and 0.71 ± 0.46 cm2 (SG) (P = .734).
The PRP dressing is no more efficacious than normal saline dressing in the management of DFU in conjunction with total-contact casting.