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Influencing factors of outcome after lower-limb amputation: a five-year review in a plastic surgical department.
Chen MC, Lee SS, Hsieh YL, Wu SJ, Lai CS, Lin SD. Ann Plast Surg. 2008 Sep;61(3):314-8.
The crude major lower limb amputation procedure rate is 8.8 per 100,000 of the population per year in Taiwan. From January 2002 to October 2006, patients that received major lower limb amputation in our department were enrolled in this study. Retrospective chart reviews concerning different factors that can affect the eventual postoperative functional status were investigated. Factors that affected the length of hospital stay included duration before amputation (P < 0.001) and renal function (P = 0.045). Phantom limb pain was affected by wound healing time (P = 0.006). Factors that affected the daily prosthesis usage time were initial infection status (P = 0.021), renal function (P = 0.01), patient educational level (P = 0.016), and pretraining waiting time (P = 0.003). The duration of prosthetic training was affected by patient educational level (P = 0.004) and marital status (P = 0.024). In addition, subjective satisfaction about the usage of prosthesis was affected by pretraining waiting time (P = 0.001) and daily prosthesis usage time (P < 0.001). The daily prosthesis usage time was closely related to life quality improvement (P < 0.001) and subjective satisfaction of prosthesis usage (P < 0.001). Despite reported unchangeable factors like age, end-stage renal disease, dementia, coronary artery disease, and level of amputation, preprosthesis training waiting time significantly affected the satisfaction and daily usage time of the prosthesis. Surgeons can make some contribution to accelerate amputation wound healing and stump maturation by choosing the correct operating procedure, delicately managing the soft tissue, and ascertaining proper wound care to improve the outcome.
Digital toe amputation is a relatively minor surgical procedure but there is a historical view that it is the "first stage in a predictable clinical course" leading to eventual limb loss. There is a paucity of contemporaneous data on the long-term outcomes of patients undergoing toe amputation. We aim to study the experience from our institution, focussing on the risk factors for progression to future limb loss, by conducting a retrospective review of our practice.
Sixty-three patients undergoing toe amputation within our institution were identified and the clinical notes retrospectively reviewed. A database of vascular risk factors and co-morbidity was constructed and correlation with future limb loss was analysed with Chi-squared testing and a logistic regression model.
Sixty-three patients with a mean age of 69 (IQR 62-76.5) years were identified. Thirty-five (55.6%) of these patients went on to have a further surgical amputation; 22 major amputations (16 below-knee and 6 above-knee amputations) and 23 minor amputations were performed in total. Forty three (68.3%) patients had diabetes and 31 (49.2%) patients had one or more revascularisation procedures undertaken. There was a significant correlation between patients who did not have diabetes and future limb loss (Chi-squared=4.31, p=0.038), however no other identified risk factor predicted the need for major amputation.
Toe amputation is a significant predictor of future limb loss. Our study identified that patients with diabetes are significantly less likely to progress to further limb loss than those with the disease. We hypothesise that this difference is due to the more intensive, multi-disciplinary foot care follow-up that diabetic patients receive. These results highlight the significance of toe amputation and contribute to the evidence for a more intensive out-patient service for these high risk patients.