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imageBackground
Soft tissue defects with dead space in the ankle and foot remain a challenge for surgeons. The aim of the study was to evaluate the surgical technique and clinical significance of posterior tibial artery perforator flaps carrying partial gastrocnemius muscle for patients with soft tissue defects with dead space in the ankle area.
Methods
Between August 2015 and August 2017, 14 patients (2 women and 12 men) between 20 and 58 years old (median age, 42 years) were hospitalized in The First Affiliated Hospital of Soochow University. All injuries involved damage to the ankle area and formation of soft tissue defects with dead space. In all patients, posterior tibial artery perforator flaps carrying partial gastrocnemius muscle were transplanted to cover soft tissue defects with dead spaces.
Results
Hospitalization duration ranged from 10 to 20 days (mean, 16 days). All flaps survived and healed well. At follow-up after 6 to 24 months, all cases had recovered successfully in terms of aesthetic and functional aspects.
Conclusions
Posterior tibial artery perforator flaps carrying partial gastrocnemius muscle can be an optimal reconstruction method for repairing soft tissue defects with dead space in the ankle and foot.

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