Outcomes of split-thickness skin grafting for foot and ankle wounds in patients with peripheral arterial disease

Iram Naz, Elliot T. Walters, David E. Janhofer, Morgan M. Penzler, Eshetu A. Tefera, Karen Kim Evans, John S. Steinberg, Christopher E. Attinger, Cameron M. Akbari, Paul J. Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Introduction. Tissue ischemia resulting from arterial insufficiency is a major factor affecting lower extremity wound healing in patients with peripheral arterial disease (PAD). Accelerated wound closure with split-thickness skin grafting (STSG) provides a durable barrier to infection and can prevent limb loss. Published STSG outcomes data are minimal in the post endovascular intervention population. Objective. In this study, the authors examine factors predictive of STSG healing in patients with PAD following vascular intervention, including the effect of non-inline flow via arterial-arterial and non-arterial collateralization. Materials and Methods. Patients with PAD and wounds of the foot and ankle who underwent STSG between January 2014 and December 2016 were retrospectively reviewed. All patients received angiographic evaluation and endovascular or open revascularization where necessary. Effects of extremity revascularizations, STSG percent take, and amputation rate were evaluated. Results. Thirty-five patients with 47 wounds underwent STSG. There were 21 men and 14 women with a mean age of 64 ± 13 years. Revascularization was required in 23 patients (25 extremities) before STSG, with balloon angioplasty for tibial artery lesions as the most common revascularization. Patent pedal arch was present in 8 patients; 35 patients had an absent or incomplete pedal arch. Patients with a fully patent pedal arch healed at a significantly higher rate than those with an absent or incomplete pedal arch at 1 month (62.5% vs. 17.1%, P < .05). At 90-day follow-up, 9 of 35 (25.7%) patients with 9 of 47 (19.1%) wounds were lost to follow-up, leaving 18 of 38 (47.37%) wounds healed and 20 (52.63%) still open. Ultimately, 36 of 47 (76.60%) wounds healed and 6 major amputations in 6 patients were required at a mean 502 ± 342 days follow-up. Conclusions. These results suggest the importance of arterial-arterial connections such as the pedal arch to the healing potential of foot and ankle wounds after STSG in this high-risk patient population.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)272-278
Number of pages7
Issue number11
StatePublished - 2019


  • Foot and ankle
  • Lower extremity wound
  • PAD
  • Peripheral arterial disease
  • Revascularization
  • STSG
  • Skin graft
  • Split-thickness skin graft

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Medical–Surgical


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