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Ann Vasc Dis. 2013;6(1):39-45. doi: 10.3400/avd.oa.13.00010. Epub 2013 Mar 25.

A team approach to the management of intractable leg ulcers.

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1
Department of Plastic Surgery, Kyushu Medical Center, Fukuoka, Fukuoka, Japan.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

The management of intractable leg ulcers requires a team approach which includes vascular surgeons and plastic surgeons. We retrospectively reviewed the results of the management of intractable leg ulcers by plastic surgeons.

PATIENTS AND METHODS:

A total of 73 patients with intractable leg ulcers, (79 limbs) were treated at the Department of Plastic Surgery at our institution. Skin perfusion pressure (SPP) around the ulcer on the limb was measured before and after arterial reconstructive procedures. Local ulcer management involved intra-wound continuous negative pressure and irrigation therapy or negative pressure wound therapy. We examined the rates of wound healing and associated prognostic factors.

RESULTS:

There were 21 limbs without ischemia (non-peripheral arterial disease [Non-PAD] group) and 58 limbs with ischemia (PAD group). The healing rates were 66% in the PAD group and 81% in the Non-PAD group, but the difference between the groups was not significant. A total of 41 limbs in the PAD group underwent revascularization, which involved bypass surgery in 18 limbs and endovascular therapy in 23 limbs. The salvage rate of the revascularized limbs was 83% at 1 year. The primary patency rates at 1 year were 87% for bypass surgery and 58% for endovascular therapy. The healing rate of the revascularized limbs was 66%, and the presence of concomitant hemodialysis, infected ulcers, and limbs without improved SPP were shown to be poor prognostic factors. Limbs treated with bypass surgery had a better healing rate than limbs treated with endovascular therapy, but the difference was not significant.

CONCLUSION:

Good ulcer-healing rates were achieved by effective revascularization and aggressive local management. These results suggest that a team approach is useful for the management of intractable leg ulcers. (English translation of Jpn J Vasc Surg 2011; 20: 913-920).

KEYWORDS:

foot ulcer; peripheral arterial disease (PAD); skin perfusion pressure (SPP); wound healing

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