Reconstruction of Heel Soft Tissue Defects Using Medial Plantar Artery Island Pedicle Flap: Clinical Experience and Outcomes Analysis

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Abstract

We report our clinical experience with 11 cases of heel soft tissue defects treated with a medial plantar artery island pedicle flap. We also evaluated the functional outcomes of reconstruction. We enrolled 11 patients (10 [90.9%] males and 1 [9.1%] female), who received a medial plantar artery island pedicle flap for heel soft tissue defects from August 2010 to July 2014. The cause of the defects included trauma (post-traumatic heel skin necrosis) in 2 (18.2%) patients, infection (calcaneal osteomyelitis with overlying soft tissue infection) in 2 (18.2%) patients, and tumor (stage IA melanoma) in 7 (63.6%) patients. The mean average size of the defect was 3.7 cm × 4.4 cm (range 3.1 cm × 4.0 cm to 4.5 cm × 5.5 cm). The mean follow-up period was 19.6 (range 8 to 35) months, and all flaps survived within that period. The mean static 2-point discrimination was 34.4 (range 29 to 40) mm at the heel and 17.2 mm at the distal sole. The mean visual analog scale score for the aesthetic appearance of the reconstructed heel was 9 (range 8 to 9.5). The average revised Foot Function Index score was 25.8 (range 21 to 37). The medial plantar artery island pedicle flap is a versatile and effective method for reconstructing heel soft tissue defects.

Level of Clinical Evidence: 4

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