Lawn Mower Injuries to the Lower Extremity: A 10-Year Retrospective Review

Robert M. Greenhagen, Katherine M. Raspovic, Brandon E. Crim, Michael T. Ryan, Gary G. Gruen

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Introduction. Lawn mower injuries occur frequently in the United States and oftentimes result in extensive trauma to the lower extremities. These injuries can be quite devastating and cause there to be loss of function and amputation. The purpose of this study was to determine if there are specific factors that would help determine the best treatment protocol, patient outcomes, and prognosis after lawn mower injury to the foot and ankle. Material and Methods. A retrospective review of medical records was performed on all patients treated at a university level 1 trauma center from 2000 to 2010. Only subjects 18 years or older who sustained an injury below the level of the knee were included for review. Results. Seventy-three patients were included in this review. The results revealed that patients who developed a complication were significantly older than the group of patients without complications (P = .03). Digits were found to be injured most often but the odds of developing a complication were much higher if these injuries involved the plantar foot, dorsal foot, or ankle. Interestingly, patients on prolonged antibiotic therapy had a significantly higher risk of developing complications. The presence of comorbidities significantly increased the risk of complication (P = .008); the greatest risk factors were cardiovascular disease (P = .001) and diabetes (P = .06). Discussion. The authors present the largest cohort of lawn mower injuries in the medical literature, which demonstrates that factors such as age, location of injury, and the presence of comorbidities influence the outcome and increase the risk of injury to the foot and ankle. These results may be useful in determining the best treatment plan possible for patients with these severe injuries.Levels of Evidence: Therapeutic, Level IV, Retrospective case series

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)119-124
Number of pages6
JournalFoot and Ankle Specialist
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2013


  • amputation and limb salvage
  • complex foot and ankle conditions
  • general disorders
  • reconstructive foot and ankle surgery
  • soft-tissue repair
  • trauma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Podiatry
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine


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