A reliable approach to diabetic neuroischemic foot wounds: below-the-knee angiosome-oriented angioplasty

Vlad Alexandrescu, Gaetane Vincent, Khalid Azdad, Gerard Hubermont, Gilles Ledent, Christian Ngongang, Ana-Maria Filimon
Journal of Endovascular Therapy 2011, 18 (3): 376-87

PURPOSE: To evaluate the clinical benefit in wound healing and limb preservation after primary below-the-knee angioplasty guided by an angiosome model of perfusion in diabetic patients with neuroischemic foot ulcers.

METHODS: From September 2001 to April 2010, 232 limb-threatening neuroischemic wounds in 208 diabetic patients (147 men; mean age 74.3 years, range 42-97) were treated by below-the-knee endoluminal and/or subintimal angioplasty. There were 19 (8%) TASC II type B, 80 (34%) type C, and 133 (57%) type D infrapopliteal lesions. Patients treated prior to 2005 when the angiosome-targeted revascularization protocol was introduced (89 limbs, group 1) were compared to 134 limbs treated subsequently according to the angiosome model (group 2). The angiosome-oriented group 2 included 25% procedures focusing on the anterior tibial and dorsalis pedis arteries, 68% on the posterior tibial and plantar vessels, and 7% on the peroneal arteries.

RESULTS: The global technical success was 80% (187/232): 82% in group 1 and 79% in group 2. The cumulative patient survival rates were 90%, 78%, and 65% in group 1 and 93%, 82%, and 71% in group 2 at 12, 24, and 36 months, respectively (p = 0.545). At the same time points, the freedom from amputation rates were 84%, 79%, and 79% in group 1 versus 90%, 89%, and 89% in group 2 (p = 0.035). Clinical success rates were 76%, 68%, 68% in the group 1 and 85%, 79%, and 79% in group 2 (p = 0.025). Primary and secondary patency rates did not differ between groups (p = 0.813 and p = 0.511). Patients in group 2 treated with angiosome-targeted revascularization had significantly better wound healing (p<0.018) and limb preservation (p<0.030).

CONCLUSION: Below-the-knee first-line angioplasty guided by an angiosome model may prove beneficial in terms of better wound healing of diabetic foot ulcers and subsequent limb salvage. Further technical improvements and large comparative studies are necessary to support these observations.

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