A contemporary comparative analysis of immediate postoperative prosthesis placement following below-knee amputation

Mujtaba M. Ali, Lorraine Loretz, Art Shea, Eli Poorvu, William P. Robinson, Andres Schanzer, Louis M. Messina, Donald T. Baril

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


Background: Despite advances in the treatment of peripheral arterial disease, a significant number of patients ultimately require major amputations. Traditionally, postoperative management of a below-knee amputation involves soft compressive dressings to allow for complete stump healing before initial prosthesis fitting. This technique is associated with a prolonged period of limited mobility, placing patients at risk for deconditioning or fall with a risk of injury to the stump. In contrast, immediate postoperative prosthesis (IPOP) placement allows patients to begin ambulation and rehabilitation on postoperative day 1, which may be of significant physiologic and psychological benefit. The purpose of this study is to compare the outcomes of patients undergoing IPOP placement to those of a historical control group managed with traditional soft compressive dressing placement. Methods: Medical records of all consecutive below-knee amputation patients who underwent IPOP (IPOP group; 37 patients, 2007-2010) and all patients who underwent traditional soft compressive dressing placement and were IPOP candidates (non-IPOP group; 35 patients, 2006-2007) were retrospectively reviewed. Patient comorbidities and preoperative ambulation status were compared between the IPOP and the non-IPOP groups. Primary outcomes evaluated included perioperative systemic complications, wound complications, need for surgical revision, and the time until placement of a definitive prosthesis. Data were analyzed using the chi-squared and Student's t-test. Results: Preoperative comorbidities and patient characteristics of the 2 groups were similar, although the IPOP group was younger (61.5 vs. 69.0 years; P = 0.01). Immediate perioperative systemic complication rates were not significantly different between the 2 groups (IPOP 29.7% vs. non-IPOP 31.4%; P = 0.876). Postoperative wound complication rates were as follows: wound infection (IPOP 18.9% vs. non-IPOP 25.0%; P = 0.555), wound dehiscence (IPOP 29.7% vs. non-IPOP 25.0%; P = 0.673), and skin breakdown separate from the incision (IPOP 18.9% vs. non-IPOP 3.6%; P = 0.062). Patients in the IPOP group trended towards fewer postoperative falls (IPOP 10.8% vs. non-IPOP 21.4%; P = 0.240). The need for revision was significantly greater in the non-IPOP group (IPOP 5.4% vs. non-IPOP 27.6%; P = 0.013). The time from surgery to placement of the preparatory prosthesis was 51 days in the IPOP group.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1146-1153
Number of pages8
JournalAnnals of Vascular Surgery
Issue number8
StatePublished - 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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