Negative-pressure wound therapy (NPWT) is a well-known treatment modality for chronic, difficult, nonhealing wounds. Unfortunately, many commercially available negative-pressure therapy systems for wounds are expensive, require hospitalization, and may not be available throughout the world. The authors have designed a less expensive and effective NPWT system from components readily available in the hospital.
The system is assembled from ethylene oxide sterilized polyurethane foam, transparent adhesive dressing, and a simple negative suction drain system, which is being routinely used in surgical cases. The multiple holes suction tube is inserted between 2 layers of polyurethane foam and is put on the wound, which is sealed by adhesive dressing. The negative pressure is created using a closed wound suction set. The dressing is changed every third day or as needed.
The authors have used this system in 11 patients with diabetic foot. The mean time for preparation of wound for surgery with this system was 7 days (5–9 days). The raw areas were either secondarily closed or were covered with split-thickness skin graft. The mean hospital stay for debridement and definitive surgical procedure was 11 days (8–15 days).
In the authors’ experience, the NPWT system developed from off-the-shelf components reduces the length of hospital stays and therefore cost, without any compromise on quality. It leads to a quicker wound closure and reduces the need for multiple surgeries or flaps. This modification presents a simple, cheap, and effective alternative to commercially available NPWT machines.
The authors from India have designed a less expensive and effective negative-pressure wound therapy system from components readily available in the hospital.
Hemant A. Saraiya, MS, MCh(Plastic), is Director, Sushrut Plastic Surgery Research Center, and Consultant Plastic Surgeon, Gujarat Cancer & Research Institute, Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India.
Mukesh N. Shah, MS, is Assistant Professor of Orthopedics, GCS Medical College, Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India.
The authors have disclosed that they have no financial relationships related to this article.
Submitted April 6, 2012; accepted June 19, 2012.