Secondary Logo

Journal Logo

Institutional members access full text with Ovid®

Treatment of Full-Thickness Pressure Ulcers With a Gentamicin Sponge: A Case Report

Stafiej, Joanna M.; Szewczyk, Maria T.

Journal of Wound, Ostomy and Continence Nursing: May/June 2012 - Volume 39 - Issue 3 - p 331–341
doi: 10.1097/WON.0b013e31825490e2

BACKGROUND: Five pressure ulcers (stage III and stage IV) were successfully treated with collagen sponges filled with gentamicin.

CASE DESCRIPTION: All ulcers occurred in an immobile 94-year-old woman with advanced dementia. One of the pressure ulcers, located on the patient's sacrum, was considered life-threatening due to size and depth. All ulcers were treated with a collagen sponge filled with gentamicin; the sponge was replaced at variable intervals, ranging from 6 days to 2 months, depending on absorption of the collagen. All 5 pressure ulcers improved based on reductions in wound depth and surface area. Two of the pressure ulcers healed completely; in these wounds, gentamicin sponge therapy was initiated shortly after development of the ulcer. None of the wounds exhibited evidence of reinfection following initiation of therapy. No adverse events were observed. The rate at which the collagen sponge was absorbed slowed significantly after the initial treatment phase.

CONCLUSIONS: In this patient, the use of a collagen sponge filled with gentamicin was effective in preventing infection and promoting healing of multiple full-thickness pressure ulcers. Long-term use was not associated with any adverse effects, even in this frail and immobile patient.

Joanna M. Stafiej, MD, PhD, Department of Ophthalmology, Ludwik Rydygier Medical College in Bydgoszcz, Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toru´n, Poland.

Maria T. Szewczyk, MD, PhD, Head, Department of Surgery Nursing, Ludwik Rydygier Medical College in Bydgoszcz, Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toru´n, Poland.

Correspondence: Joanna M. Stafiej, MD, PhD, Katedra i Klinika Chorób Oczu Medical College, UMK, ul. M. Skłodowskiej, Curie 9, 85-094 Bydgoszcz, Poland (

The authors herewith certify that they have no commercial, proprietary, or financial interest in the products or companies described in the article.

Copyright © 2012 by the Wound, Ostomy and Continence Nurses Society