• A comparison between complete immobilisation and protected active mobilisation in sensory nerve recovery following isolated digital nerve injury.

      Henry, F P; Farkhad, R I; Butt, F S; O'Shaughnessy, M; O'Sullivan, S T; Department of Plastic, Reconstructive and Hand Surgery, Cork University Hospital, Wilton, Cork, Ireland. frankphenry@gmail.com (2012-06)
      Post-operative immobilisation following isolated digital nerve repair remains a controversial issue amongst the microsurgical community. Protocols differ from unit to unit and even, as evidenced in our unit, may differ from consultant to consultant. We undertook a retrospective review of 46 patients who underwent isolated digital nerve repair over a 6-month period. Follow-up ranged from 6 to 18 months. Twenty-four were managed with protected active mobilisation over a 4-week period while 22 were immobilised over the same period. Outcomes such as return to work, cold intolerance, two-point discrimination and temperature differentiation were used as indicators of clinical recovery. Our results showed that there was no significant difference noted in either clinical assessment of recovery or return to work following either post-operative protocol, suggesting that either regime may be adopted, tailored to the patient's needs and resources of the unit.
    • Lumbar hibernoma: a rare cause of soft tissue swelling.

      Shah, S H A; Wain, R A J; Butt, F S (2010-06)
    • Subcutaneous emphysema of the upper extremity following penetrating blackthorn injury to the wrist.

      Tiong, W H C; Butt, F S; Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Cork University Hospital, Cork, Ireland. willhct@yahoo.com (2009-02)
      SUMMARY: Noninfective subcutaneous emphysema of the upper extremity, albeit rare, has to be borne in mind when treating patients with subcutaneous emphysema. The misdiagnosis of this condition as its serious infective counterpart often leads to unnecessary aggressive treatment. Noninfective subcutaneous emphysema often accompanies a patient who has no systemic symptoms of illness. Unfortunately, the distinction is not always easy especially when history of injury suggests involvement of an infective or reactive element. Penetrating blackthorn injury is common, especially in rural communities, and often occurs from farming or gardening activities. Blackthorn penetration can cause numerous tissue reactions once embedded under the skin and they are often contaminated with soil. Here we present, for the first time, a case where penetrating blackthorn injury to the wrist resulted in noninfective subcutaneous emphysema involving the whole upper limb and neck, and its subsequent management.