Acta Orthop Belg. 2011 Jun;77(3):355-61.
The anterolateral incision for pilon fracture surgery: an anatomic study of cutaneous blood supply.
University of Louisville School of Medicine, Louisville, KY, USA.
The purpose of this study was to examine the blood supply to the adjacent skin and its vulnerability to anterolateral tibial plating performed with fibular plating through a single surgical incision. Ten lightly embalmed cadaver legs without a history of lower extremity trauma or surgery with a mean age of 71 years (range, 57 to 87 years) were used for this investigation. Each specimen was injected with a commercially available silicone compound through the popliteal artery. The left leg was plated through a modified extensile Böhler approach and the right leg served as the control. Each leg was anatomically dissected. All measurements were taken using a digital caliper by a single investigator. A mean of 93 (range, 4 to 17) perforating arteries were present and in the proximity of the fibula plate. Our findings suggest the potential for iatrogenic soft tissue breakdown along the posterior border of the anterolateral surgical incision in this procedure as a result of compromised blood supply to the skin