The Role of Free Flaps for Salvage of the Exposed Total Ankle Arthroplasty.
Total ankle arthroplasty in the right circumstances cannot only relieve discomfort; but, unlike an ankle arthrodesis, can restore enhanced ambulatory capabilities. Subsequent wound healing issues have the potential to ultimately lead to implant removal, a disaster that can be avoided by as early intervention as possible that will provide sustainable wound closure. Over the past 5 years, 5 patients have presented in a delayed fashion with wound breakdown following total ankle arthroplasty that required a free flap for successful prosthesis salvage. The mean wound size was 78.0 cm(2) (range 14-200 cm(2) ). Two gracilis and 2 latissimus dorsi muscle free flaps were chosen as a malleable means not just to cover but to fill these usually large 3-dimensional wounds. A single radial forearm perforator free flap was selected in one case for a superficial wound that required a long vascular pedicle to reach outside the zone of injury. The postoperative course for all was uneventful, with a minimum follow-up of 4 months. Function preservation following total ankle arthroplasty wound breakdown even after an untimely delay in referral can still be maintained using microsurgical tissue transfers. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Microsurgery, 2015.
Published In/Presented At
Hallock, G. G. (2015). The role of free flaps for salvage of the exposed total ankle arthroplasty. Microsurgery, 37(1),34-37. doi:10.1002/micr.22429.
Other Medical Specialties | Surgery
Department of Surgery