Measurement of deep muscle temperature in ischemic limbs

Donald B. Williams, Richard C. Karl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Temperature profiles extending from the deep muscle out to the surface at points above and below the knee were measured using a 22 gauge thermistor probe in the form of a hypodermic needle in 15 ischemic limbs before amputation and 3 normal limbs before elective surgery. Of the 15 ischemic limbs studied, 8 had below-knee and 7 above-knee amputations, all of which healed without requiring revision. The mean difference between the maximum deep muscle temperature measured 15 cm above and 10 cm below the knee was 1.01 °C in the below-knee amputation group, 2.88 °C in the above-knee amputation group and 1.06 °C in the normal group. The temperature difference in the below-knee and above-knee groups was statistically significant (p <0.027). This relatively simple and easily performed technique of measuring deep muscle temperature appears to be a useful adjunct in choosing the amputation level.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)503-507
Number of pages5
JournalThe American Journal of Surgery
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1980
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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