The Foot and Ankle section within the UT Southwestern Department of Orthopaedic Surgery has seven full-time, board-certified physicians, including Department Chairman Dane K. Wukich, M.D., and Section Chief, Michael VanPelt, D.P.M. Other members of the multidisciplinary team are Matthew Johnson, D.P.M.; George Liu, D.P.M.; Kshitij Manchanda, M.D.; and Katherine Raspovic, D.P.M. The section welcomed Suganthi Kandasamy, D.P.M., to the team this fall 2022. Dedicated to the management of foot and ankle disorders, the section provides high-quality, comprehensive treatment, care, and rehabilitation services to patients. During a surgical consultation, the section assists patients with a department-produced Foot and Ankle Surgery Journey Guide to provide step-by-step guidance and ensure commitment to world-class treatment and care. Dr. Raspovic leads the Diabetic Limb Salvage program and the Limb Salvage service line, which is a joint service line at UTSW’s Clements University Hospital in a collaboration with the wound care plastic surgery foot specialists. The section currently serves four locations: UTSW’s main campus, Parkland Memorial Hospital, the Dallas VA, UT Southwestern Medical Center at Las Colinas, and UT Southwestern at Frisco. Among its recent clinical focuses, the section began performing ankle mobility preservation procedures using total ankle replacements for end-stage arthritis with the use of Wright Medical’s Infinity® system. This is based on the consolidated effort to preserve joint mobility for the ankle with one system in practice. This system further incorporates Wright Medical’s Prophecy system, which provides a 3D-printed template to assist in preoperative planning and reduce operative time.
The Foot and Ankle section conducted several noteworthy studies and research activities over the past year that involved the assistance of the residents. Several of the research initiatives revolved around the subjects of diabetic foot infections and total ankle replacement outcomes. In one highlighted trial, Drs. Wukich, Liu, Raspovic, and VanPelt collaborated on multicenter outcomes- based research using the Lapiplasty® system for hallux valgus correction. At the ACFAS 2022 Conference, they received an honorable mention for their manuscript.
To provide continuing educational opportunities and a positive learning environment, the Foot and Ankle faculty host an indications conference every Friday with the residents. These conferences are critical in providing residents the opportunity to analyze the varied foot and ankle cases they will see throughout their careers. Drs. Liu and VanPelt continue to teach as ACFAS arthroscopic course faculty, and Drs. Wukich and Raspovic are involved in an industry-sponsored Charcot foot disorder course for diabetic patients to enhance education on prevention.