Bilateral compartment syndrome of the lower limbs after urological surgery in the lithotomy position: a clinical case

posted on 08.05.2019 by José Maciel Caldas dos Reis, Lauro José Mendes Queiroz, Pablo Ferreira Mello, Renan Kleber Costa Teixeira, Fábio de Azevedo Gonçalves

Abstract Acute compartment syndrome of the lower extremities after urological surgery in the lithotomy position is a rare but potentially devastating clinical and medicolegal problem. We report the case of a 67-year-old male who underwent laparoscopic prostatectomy surgery to treat cancer, spending 180 minutes in surgery. Postoperatively, the patient developed acute compartment syndrome of both legs, needing emergency bilateral four-compartment fasciotomies, with repeated returns to the operating room for second-look procedures. The patient also exhibited delayed wound closure. He regained full function within 6 months, returning to unimpaired baseline activity levels. This report aims to highlight the importance of preoperative awareness of this severe complication which, in conjunction with early recognition and immediate surgical management, may mitigate long-term adverse sequelae and improve postoperative outcomes.