Categories: Abstracts, 2021, Podium

Limb salvage versus below knee amputation for severe adult lower limb deformity – a retrospective, comparative series

C. Oswal, S. Patel, K. Malhotra, I. Sedki, N. Cullen, M. Welck

1Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital, Foot and Ankle Unit, Stanmore, London, United Kingdom
2Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital, Prosthetic Rehabilitation Unit, Stanmore, London, United Kingdom

Introduction: Severe, multiplanar, fixed, pantalar deformities present a challenge to orthopaedic surgeons. Surgical options include limb salvage or amputation. This study compares outcomes of patients with such deformities undergoing limb preservation with either pantalar fusion (PTF) or talectomy and tibiocalcaneal fusion (TCF), versus below knee amputation (BKA).

Methods: Fifty-one patients undergoing either PTF, TCF and BKA for failed management of severe pantalar deformity were evaluated retrospectively. Twenty-seven patients underwent PTF, 8 TCF and 16 BKA. Median age at surgery was 55.0 years (17 to 72 years) and median follow-up duration was 49.9 months (18.0 to 253.7 months). Patients with chronic regional pain syndrome, tumour, acute trauma or diabetic Charcot arthropathy were excluded. Clinical evaluation was undertaken using the MOxFQ, EQ-5D and Special Interest Group in Amputee Medicine score (SIGAM). Patients were also asked whether they were satisfied with their surgical outcome and whether they would have the same surgery again.

Results: There was no statistically significant difference in patient reported outcomes, satisfaction, or complication profile between the groups. Twenty-two patients undergoing PTF (81.5%), 6 patients undergoing TCF (75%), and 15 patients undergoing BKA (93.8%) were satisfied overall (p=0.414). Similarly, there was no difference in the proportion of patients who would opt for the same procedure again (p=0.142): 23 in the PTF group (85.2%), 8 in the TCF group (100%), and 11 in the BKA group (68.8%). Seven patients undergoing PTF (25.9%), 2 patients undergoing TCF (25%) and 6 patients undergoing BKA (37.5%) had major complications (p=0.692).

Conclusion: This study has shown that PTF, TCF and BKA can all provide an acceptable outcome in treatment of severe, degenerative deformities of the lower extremity. Therefore, surgical decisions must be based on individual patient considerations. This data may also be useful in counselling patients when considering limb salvage versus amputation for severe deformity.


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