Deliberate attention to the management of soft tissue is imperative when performing an amputation. Identification and proper management of the nerves accompanied by the performance of a stable myodesis and ensuring robust soft-tissue coverage are measures that will improve patient outcomes.
Limb length should be preserved when practicable; however, length preservation at the expense of creating a nonhealing or painful residual limb with poor soft-tissue coverage is contraindicated.
While a large proportion of individuals with a trauma-related amputation remain severely disabled, a chronically painful residual limb is not inevitable and late revision amputations to improve soft-tissue coverage, stabilize the soft tissues (revision myodesis), or remove symptomatic neuromas can dramatically improve patient outcomes.
Psychosocial issues may dramatically affect the outcomes after trauma-related amputations. A multidisciplinary team should be consulted or created to address the multiple complex physical, mental, and psychosocial issues facing patients with a recent amputation.
Investigation performed at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center, Washington, DC, and the National Naval Medical Center, Bethesda, Maryland
Disclaimer: The opinions and assertions contained herein are the private views of the authors and are not to be construed as official or as reflecting the views of the United States Army, United States Navy, or the Department of Defense.
Disclosure: The authors did not receive any outside funding or grants in support of their research for or preparation of this work. Neither they nor a member of their immediate families received payments or other benefits or a commitment or agreement to provide such benefits from a commercial entity.
- Copyright © 2010 by The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, Incorporated
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