Author(s): Yamaguchi Y, Yoshida S, Sumikawa Y, Kubo T, Hosokawa K,
Abstract Share this page
Abstract BACKGROUND: Diabetic foot ulcers with exposed bones commonly result in amputation. OBJECTIVES: To determine whether exposure of bone marrow cells and subsequent grafting of epidermal sheets accelerates healing and reduces the need for amputation. METHODS: Thirty-eight patients with chronic wounds caused by diabetes mellitus were enrolled in this study. Epidermal sheets obtained from suction blisters of each patient were grafted on to diabetic foot ulcers without exposed bones (n = 10) and were compared with the standard treatment of local wound care, debridement with a scalpel when indicated, bed rest and parenteral antibiotics (n = 8). In another group of patients, diabetic wounds with exposed bones were treated either with the standard procedure (n = 9) or with a newly developed experimental procedure (n = 11). In that new procedure, the affected bone was initially exposed by debridement with a scalpel, followed by partial excision with a bone scraper until fresh bleeding was observed from the exposed bone. The lesions were then immediately covered with an occlusive dressing, and finally the wound was covered with an epidermal graft of skin harvested from suction blisters. Patients in each group were matched with their counterparts by age, sex, wound size, wound infection and wound duration, to compare the time needed for total skin repair and rates of amputation. RESULTS: Epidermal grafting significantly accelerated the healing of diabetic foot ulcers (P = 0.042) without exposed bones, with site-specific differentiation. The newly developed combination therapy resulted in the healing of all diabetic ulcers with exposed bones without the occurrence of osteomyelitis or the necessity for amputation (P < 0.0001). CONCLUSIONS: Our study indicates that early aggressive debridement of diabetic foot ulcers with exposed bones down to a bleeding vascularized base and then grafting epidermal sheets significantly improves healing and reduces the rate of amputation.
This article was published in Br J Dermatol
and referenced in Clinical Pharmacology & Biopharmaceutics