Blast of sound can speed up wound healing

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

LONDON - An ultrasound device that fires sound waves into chronic wounds like leg ulcers can accelerate healing.

Research shows treating wounds with high-intensity ultrasound, which helps to clean the wound of debris, can significantly improve the rate at which they heal. Now, a trial is under way to study this exact rate.

A significant number of people suffering from chronic wounds have diabetes - one in six people with this condition will develop a non-healing ulcer.

There are a number of treatments, from antibiotics to surgery, but in many cases wounds fail to heal for weeks, months, or even years. In severe cases, amputation of a limb may be necessary, the Daily Mail reports.

Now, ultrasound could prove an effective new option. A study at the Mayo Clinic in the US found that more wounds healed with ultrasound than with conventional therapy alone, according to a Mayo Clinic statement.

After 12 weeks, 63 percent of ultrasound-treated patients had healing rates greater than 50 percent, compared with 29 percent of patients given standard care. Ultrasound was given three times a week for five minutes a session.

Another trial is under way at the Centre for Curative And Palliative Wound Care in New York, comparing the rate of healing in chronic wounds treated by ultrasound with standard wound care.

Scientists say ultrasound is an effective way of eliminating bacteria in a wound, which interferes with healing. It also helps preserve healthy tissue and protect newly-formed tissue.

Filed under: Antibiotics, Medicine, World

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