Comparison of the Results of Early Flap Coverage with Late Flap Coverage in High-Voltage Electrical Injury

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Abstract

Patients with high-voltage electrical injuries had very high rates of infection, morbidity, and limb amputation. The results of early and late flap coverage in these patients were prospectively compared. The patients were divided into two groups, early flap group (≤3 weeks) and late flap group (>3 weeks), according to the length of time from injury to wound coverage with flap. Age, sex, demographic data, time taken for flap coverage, time taken for pedicle division, time taken to discharge, wound infection, range of motion in joints, amputation, mortality, and outcome were gathered in a special questionnaire. This study included 55 patients, 31 within the early flap group and 24 within the late flap group. Of the 55 patients, 94.6% were male; mean (SD) of age was 29.04 (10.11) and of TBSA was 13.8 (10.07). Length of stay was significantly longer in the late flap group. The rates of infection and amputation were lower in the early flap group. There was no correlation between the type and the number of flaps and amputations. Early flap repair reduces the length of stay by 56%, rate of amputation by 54%, and also 86.1% in the rate of infection in the burn site.

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