Background: Negative pressure wound therapy (NPWT) is an effective and widely used intervention in the management of problematic wounds.
Purpose: The purpose of this experimental study was to explore differences in the mode of action of sNPWT (a no-canister, ultra-portable NPWT device with multi-layered dressing technology that delivers NPWT to the wound and wider zone); which has recently been found to result in superior clinical outcomes than traditional NPWT (tNPWT) in chronic wounds.
Methods: Full-thickness excisional wounds were randomized to either sNPWT or tNPWT. Devices were used according to manufacturer’s guidelines and changed every 6 days for sNPWT (no filler) and every 3 days for tNPWT. Observational and histological measurements were taken after 6, 12 and 18 days of treatment to assess various wound healing and surrounding skin outcomes.
Results: Whilst rates of closure were largely equivalent, enhanced re-epithelialization was observed with sNPWT. tNPWT treated wounds filled faster, but the granulation tissue formed was more advanced in terms of cellular profile with sNPWT treatment. Removal of filler material during tNPWT† dressing changes appeared to damage the wound surface; whereas, the sNPWT treated wounds remained undisturbed. Effects on peri-wound barrier function, erythema and cellular activity in the wider sNPWT treatment zone that may aid healing will also be presented.
Conclusion: This pre-clinical study suggests that the unique means by which sNPWT delivers negative pressure, through multi-layered dressing technology, may confer therapeutic benefits above and beyond those of traditional NPWT. Stimulating re-epithelialization, cellular activity and minimizing tissue disruption may explain the enhanced wound healing outcomes observed clinically.