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Amputation injuries in children occur in motor vehicle, farming and, importantly, lawn mower accidents. Treatment of lawn mower related injuries is complicated by gross wound contamination, avascular tissue, soft tissue defects and exposed bone. Many treatment options exist and often an adequate prosthetic supply is needed for rehabilitation. We report on an 8-year old boy who got under a ride-on lawn mower and sustained a subtotal amputation of his right foot. After initial surgery an amputation was subsequently necessary. For this, it had to be taken into account that the traumatic loss of the talus, calcaneus and parts of the cuboid bone would result in a length shortening of the right leg and so far not injured metatarsal and tarsal bones had to be sacrificed. Thus, we aimed to develop a new operation technique to optimize stump length as well as preserve tarsal bones and the possibility of limb growth. In order to achieve this, we performed a new stump forming operation in which we integrated uninjured tarsal and metatarsal bones. First a Lisfranc's amputation was performed and a metatarsal bone was kept aside. The talus, calcaneus as well as the cuboid bone were either completely or almost completely destroyed and were removed. The remaining cuneiform bones were transfixed by a notched metatarsal bone, thus achieving a tarsal arthrodesis, and the cartilages of the proximal joint surfaces were removed. The cartilage of the cranial and caudal navicular as well as the distal tibial joint surface was also removed and an arthrodesis between the distal tibia and the navicular bone was achieved by crossed Kirschner wires. Finally the cuneiform bones were placed inferior to the navicular bone. Further stump coverage was managed by skin and muscle flaps as well as split skin graft. Our patient was discharged on day 34. A fluent gait without crutches as well as sports activities were possible again as early as 6 1/2 months after the injury. Using our stump forming technique we hope to prevent some complications of amputation injuries. Because of the intact epiphysis a bone overgrowth is hopefully prevented and growth potential is preserved and by inclusion of tarsal and metatarsal bones in the stump formation a length discrepancy is minimized. (c) Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart-New York.


J Bayer, H Zajonc, P C Strohm, M Vohrer, D Maier-Lenz, N P Südkamp, L Schwering. Stump forming after traumatic foot amputation of a child--description of a new surgical procedure and literature review of lawnmower accidents]. Zeitschrift für Orthopädie und Unfallchirurgie. 2009 Jul-Aug;147(4):427-32

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PMID: 19693738

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