To compare outcomes after application of full-thickness, meshed free-skin grafts in single-session versus delayed (staged) procedures after tumor excision from the distal aspects of the limbs in dogs.
52 client-owned dogs.
Medical records were retrospectively reviewed to identify dogs that received full-thickness, meshed free-skin grafts after tumor excision from the distal aspects of the limbs between 2013 and 2018. Signalment; diagnostic test results; comorbidities; procedure type (single session or staged); tumor characteristics; donor site, recipient site, and size of grafts; concurrent procedures; surgeon; antimicrobial administration; external coaptation type; number of bandage applications; percentage graft survival; graft outcome; postoperative complications; and time to complete healing were recorded. Graft outcome was deemed successful if there was full-thickness graft viability over ≥ 75% of the original graft area. Variables were compared between dogs grouped by procedure type.
The number of bandage applications was significantly greater for dogs that had staged versus single-session procedures. Twenty-seven of 30 (90%) and 18 of 22 (82%) skin grafts placed in single-session and staged procedures, respectively, were successful. Percentage graft survival, graft outcome, and complication rate did not differ between groups. All complications were minor. Time to complete healing was significantly longer after staged procedures (median, 51 days) than after single-session procedures (29.5 days).
CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE
Results suggested both procedure types are appropriate for skin graft placement. The shorter healing time and fewer bandage changes associated with single-session skin graft placement may be beneficial after tumor excision. Prospective studies are needed to confirm these findings.
To report the clinical outcomes of the use of acellular fish skin grafts (FSGs) for the management of complex soft tissue wounds of various etiologies in dogs and cats.
13 dogs and 4 cats with complex wounds treated with FSGs between February 2019 and March 2021.
Medical records were reviewed for information regarding cause, location, size of the wound, management techniques, complications, and clinical outcomes.
In dogs, the number of FSG applications ranged from 1 to 4 (median, 2 graft applications). The time between each application ranged from 4 to 21 days (median, 9.5 days). Time to application of the first FSG ranged from 9 to 210 days (median, 19 days). Wounds closed by second-intention healing following the first fish skin application between 26 and 145 days (median, 71 days; n = 12). In cats, 1 or 2 FSGs were used, and the wounds of 3 of 4 cats healed completely by secondary intention. The wounds of 1 dog and 1 cat did not heal. There were no adverse events attributed to the use of the FSGs.
For dogs and cats of the present study, complete healing of most wounds occurred with the use of FSGs, the application of which did not require special training, instruments, or bandage materials.