To compare the efficacy of negative pressure wound therapy (NPWT) versus conventional dressings (CD) in the management of open fractures.
A systematic search of English articles in the PubMed/MEDLINE, Embase, and the Cochrane Library through April 2019 comparing NPWT versus CD in the management of open fractures.
Inclusion criteria were articles in English language, comparing NPWT with CD in skeletally mature individuals who had sustained an open fracture at any anatomical site, reporting on rates of deep infection, flap frequency, flap failure, nonunion, amputation, length of hospital, or intensive care unit stay.
Two authors independently extracted data from selected studies, and the data collected were compared with verify agreement.
Pooled odds ratios were calculated for dichotomous outcomes, whereas continuous data were analyzed using the standard weighted mean difference. A random or fixed effect model was used depending on the level of heterogeneity between the studies.
NPWT results in decreased likelihood of deep infection and flap failure compared with CD in the management of open fractures not directly amenable to early closure.
Level of Evidence:
Therapeutic Level I. See Instructions for Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.