Does the efficacy of dorsalis pedis artery bypasses vary among diabetic patients of different ethnic backgrounds?

Boulos Toursarkissian, W. Tracey Jones, Marcus D. D’Ayala, Paula K. Shireman, Amy Harrison, John Schoolfield, Mellick T. Sykes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Hispanic patients suffer from a high rate of leg amputations, far beyond what would be expected from the high prevalence of diabetes in this population. This raises questions about the efficacy of bypass operations across ethnic lines. We focused this review on dorsalis pedis bypasses, as these are frequently performed in diabetic patients. We compared outcomes between Hispanics and non-Hispanics and sought to identify factors predictive of failure or complications. The authors conducted a retrospective review of 144 dorsalis pedis bypasses in 106 men and 29 women with a mean age of 62 years. Eighty-two percent were Hispanic; 96% of cases were done for tissue loss, and 4% for rest pain. Twenty-five percent of patients experienced perioperative complications; these were more frequent in non-Hispanics than Hispanics (40% vs 22%, p = 0.05). The most frequent complications were wound related (11%). The 30-day mortality was 1.5% and 30-day graft thrombosis was 5%. Follow-up ranged from 1 to 62 months and averaged 12 months. Eighty-one percent of the limbs at risk were saved, although 36% of cases required minor foot amputations. Estimated primary graft patency was 68% at 30 months. The 30-month Kaplan-Meier curves for primary patency, assisted patency, and limb salvage were not statistically different between Hispanics and non-Hispanics (p > 0.4). Grafts that remained patent had higher duplex-derived intraoperative flow velocities in the dorsalis pedis artery than grafts that eventually failed (121 ± 69 vs 74 ± 26 cm/sec, p=0.02). In grafts that remained patent, dorsalis pedis velocity decreased from the perioperative period to the 8 to 12 weeks time point, whereas no change was seen in grafts that eventually failed (mean decline of 48 ± 76 vs 1 ± 58 cm/sec, p = 0.02). No other factors were predictive of graft failure. The results of dorsalis pedis bypass in Hispanic patients compare favorably to those seen in other ethnic groups. This suggests that other factors must account for the high amputation rates seen in Hispanics, such as a frequent occurrence of nonreconstructible disease or unaccounted for cardiovascular risk factors. The usefulness of duplex-derived flow velocities in the dorsalis pedis to predict long-term graft patency warrants further investigation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)207-212
Number of pages6
JournalVascular and Endovascular Surgery
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2002

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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