Reconstruction of Large Defect of Foot with Extensive Bone Loss Exclusively Using a Latissimus Dorsi Muscle Free Flap: A Potential New Indication for This Flap

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Abstract

In cases of extensive damage to the foot, with significant bone loss, it is generally accepted that reconstruction must include bone flaps or grafts either in the emergency setting or subsequently. In this report, we describe the case of an 18-year-old student with an avulsion injury of the dorsum of his right foot. Consequently, he lost most of the soft tissue over the dorsum of the foot and the cuboid, navicular, and cuneiform bones. A latissimus dorsi free flap was used to reconstruct the defect. A functional pseudoarthrosis developed between the remaining bones of the foot, and the patient experienced satisfactory foot function after rehabilitation. For this reason, no additional reconstructive procedure was undertaken. This case suggests that it might be adequate to use the latissimus dorsi muscle flap more liberally than previously reported in the reconstruction of extensive defects of the dorsum of the foot, including cases with significant bone loss. This option could avoid the morbidity and inconvenience of a second surgery and the need to harvest a bone flap or graft.

Level of Clinical Evidence: 4

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