Outcomes of Conventional Wound Treatment in a Comprehensive Wound Center

Akopian, Gabriel; Nunnery, Susan P.; Piangenti, Jenny; Rankin, Pam; Rinoie, Chugo; Lee, Elizabeth; Alexander, Magdi
April 2006
American Surgeon;Apr2006, Vol. 72 Issue 4, p314
Academic Journal
Conventional wound care is the elementary treatment modality for treating chronic wounds. However, early treatment with topical growth factors may be needed for a subset of chronic wounds that fail to heal with good wound care alone. A prospective nonrandomized case series from a single-community outpatient wound care clinic is presented here in an effort to identify the subset of chronic wounds that may require early adjuvant intervention. There were 378 consecutive patients with 774 chronic wounds of varying etiology. All patients received 4 weeks of conventional wound care, including weekly debridement and twice-daily dressing changes. Wounds not reduced by 50 per cent volume at 4 weeks were nonrandomly treated with human skin equivalent (Apligraf®), platelet-derived wound healing factor, or platelet-derived growth factor isoform BB (becaplermin gel, Regranex®). A total of 601 of 774 (78%) wounds healed regardless of treatment type. The median time to heal for all wounds was 49 days (interquartile range = 26-93). More women than men healed (85% vs 71%, respectively, P < 0.0001). Diabetic wounds were as likely to heal as nondiabetic wounds (78% vs 80%, P = 0.5675). Wounds that did not heal had larger volumes and higher grade compared with wounds that healed (P < 0.0001 for both variables). The data presented here show that the majority of chronic wounds will heal with conventional wound care, regardless of etiology. Large wounds with higher grades are less responsive to conventional wound care and will benefit from topical growth factor treatment early in the treatment course.


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