Local cutaneous injuries induced by ionizing radiation (IR) are difficult to treat. Many have reported local injection of adipose-derived stromal vascular fraction (SVF), often with additional therapies, as an effective treatment of IR-induced injury even after other local therapies have failed. The authors report a case of a locally recurrent, IR-induced wound that was treated with autologous, non-cultured SVF without other concurrent therapy. A nondestructive testing technician was exposed to 130 kVp x rays to his non-dominant right thumb on 5 October 2011. The wound healed 4 mo after initial conservative therapy with oral/topical α-tocopherol, oral pentoxifylline, naproxen sodium, low-dose oral steroids, topical steroids, hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT), oral antihistamines, and topical aloe vera. Remission lasted approximately 17 mo with one minor relapse in July 2012 after minimal trauma and subsequent healing. Aggressive wound breakdown during June 2013 required additional therapy with HBOT. An erythematous, annular papule developed over the following 12 mo (during which time the patient was not undergoing prescribed treatment). Electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) done more than 2 mo after exposure to IR revealed dose estimates of 14 ± 3 Gy and 19 ± 6 Gy from two centers using different EPR techniques. The patient underwent debridement of the 0.5 cm papular area, followed by SVF injection into and around the wound bed and throughout the thumb without complication. Eleven months post SVF injection, the patient has been essentially asymptomatic with an intact integument. These results raise the possibility of prolonged benefit from SVF therapy without the use of cytokines. Since there is currently no consensus on the use of isolated SVF therapy in chronic, local IR-induced injury, assessment of this approach in an appropriately powered, controlled trial in experimental animals with local radiation injury appears to be indicated.
*Radiation Emergency Assistance Center/Training Site, Oak Ridge, TN; †Division of Plastic Surgery,, University of California, San Diego, CA; ‡MJW Corporation, Amherst, NY; §TriHealth, Cincinnati, OH; **Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT.
Steven Cohen is a consultant for Cytori Therapeutics, Inc., San Diego, CA. The other authors declare no conflicts of interest.
For correspondence contact: C.J. Iddins, PO Box 117, MS 39, Oak Ridge, TN 37831, or email at email@example.com.
(Manuscript accepted 10 December 2015)