Smith & Nephew's Single-Use Wound Treatment Shown To Be Superior to Traditional Care

Edward Kim  |

Chronic Wounds

Chronic wounds—or wounds that are slow to heal—affect 6.5 million people in the US, according to the National Institutes of Health. The numbers are even larger according to the Alliance of Wound Care Stakeholders. The advocacy group estimates that 8.2 million people in the US suffer from chronic wounds, and the numbers are only projected to increase as a result of an aging population, increases in diabetes and obesity and a rapidly expanding need for wound care services for veterans.

If untreated, chronic wounds can lead to loss of limbs or even death. Chronic wounds are a silent epidemic, as there are often other, potentially multiple chronic conditions that accompany the wound.

A widely cited study from 2004 by Bickers et al. at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, Department of Dermatology, showed that in a single year, chronic wounds cost $9.7 billion in the US. One can only imagine how much that burden has increased since then. Venous or arterial insufficiency, diabetes, and local-pressure effects are the most common causes of chronic wounds. Though these wounds can be can be managed with traditional negative pressure wound therapy, the treatment requires bulky mechanical pumps that can be complex to use and that can limit patient mobility.

Smith & Nephew Single-Use System

A new randomized, controlled trial demonstrated that Smith & Nephew's PICO Single Use Negative Pressure Wound Therapy System significantly reduced wound area, depth and volume compared with traditional negative pressure wound therapy in patients with venous leg ulcers and diabetic foot ulcers.

PICO consists of a negative pressure wound therapy pump connected to an absorbent adhesive dressing that is applied to the wound. When the pump is turned on, air is pulled out of the dressing, drawing excess fluid from the wound into the dressing. The dressing helps to prevent bacteria from entering the wound. It may also improve blood flow to the wound which will help it to heal.

Significant Improvement Over Traditional Negative Pressure Wound Therapy

  • 39.1% average reduction in wound area
  • 32.5% average reduction in wound depth
  • 91.1% average reduction in wound volume
  • 51% relative increase in the number of patients achieving wound closure at 12 weeks
  • Dressing changes were less frequent with 6.8 fewer changes and 3.4 days longer wear time
  • Overall satisfaction was greater
  • Fewer patients had adverse events

PICO sNPWT has a strong evidence base with 103 published papers of which 21 are published RCTs and 65 are unique clinical studies.

I decided to use PICO Single Use Negative Pressure Wound Therapy System to treat a diabetic foot ulcer, after achieving excellent results using the therapy on skin flaps and full thickness skin grafts. By introducing PICO as an early intervention for lower extremity ulcers, we’ve been able to help kick-start wound healing and ultimately improve the quality of life for patients who experience a faster and more predictable healing trajectory, as well as being mobile and able to resume treatment at home.

Rosemary Hill, Wound Ostomy Nurse, Lions Gate Hospital, Vancouver.

Edward Kim is Managing Editor of


Source: Equities News

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