Incidence and Predictors of Lower Limb Split-Skin Graft Failure and Primary Closure Dehiscence in Day-Case Surgical Patients

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BACKGROUNDAfter general surgery, the lower limb experiences some of the highest complication rates. However, little is known about contributing factors to surgical site failure in the lower limb dermatological surgery population.OBJECTIVETo determine the incidence of lower limb surgical site failure and to explore the predictors that contribute to surgical site failure.METHODSA prospective observational study design was used to collect data from 73 participants, from July 2010, to March 2012. Incidence was determined as a percentage of surgical site failure from the total population. Predictors were determined by the use of a binary logistic regression model.RESULTSThe surgical site failure rate was 53.4%. Split-skin grafting had a higher failure rate than primary closures, 66% versus 26.1%. Predictors of lower limb surgical site failure were identified as increasing age (p = .04) and the presence of postoperative hematoma (p = .01), with all patients who developed surgical site infection experiencing surgical site failure (p = .01).CONCLUSIONFindings from this study confirmed that the lower limb is at high risk of surgical site failure. Two predictors of surgical site failure from this cohort were determined. However, to understand this phenomenon and make recommendations to assist and reduce surgical site complications, further research in this field is required.

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