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Esmarch tourniquet in orthopaedic surgery.
A bloodless field is important in many orthopaedic operations necessitating the use of a pneumatic tourniquet or Esmarch bandage. The outcome of the use of an Esmarch bandage for exsanguination and as a tourniquet in 112 consecutive patients who had elective orthopaedic operations on 131 limbs was evaluated. The setting was at Obafemi Awolowo University Teaching Hospitals Complex, Ile-Ife, Nigeria, from March 2003 to February 2005. The mean age of the patients was 25.7 + standard deviation years (range 1-70 years). The duration of tourniquet application ranged from 20 min to 2 h 35 min. Four limbs (3.1%) developed acute compartment syndrome; four (3.1%) had tourniquet paralysis with ulnar nerve involvement in three limbs. All limbs regained full neurological function following physiotherapy. There was wound infection in two limbs (1.5%). In spite of its drawbacks, the Esmarch bandage is still useful for exsanguination and as a tourniquet in orthopaedic surgery where there is no pneumatic tourniquet.
Department of Orthopaedic Surgery and Traumatology, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Nigeria. email@example.com, ,
Elective Surgical Procedures
Pub Type(s)Journal Article