Smith & Nephew (FTSE:SN, NYSE:SNN) touted the outcomes of a clinical study review, reporting that Negative Pressure Wound Therapy proved effective in reducing complications when applied to surgical wounds for a few days following an operation.
The review, published by an "Expert Panel" funded by Smith & Nephew, included outcomes from 33 published papers, including studies evaluating orthopedic, cardiothoracic and abdominal surgeries, among other, most of which were from the past 3 years.
"Thus far 2 randomized controlled trials – 1 in orthopedic and 1 in cardiothoracic surgery – show evidence of reduced incidence of wound healing complications after between 3 and 5 days of post-operative NPWT of 2- and 4-fold, respectively," according to the authors. "In its 10-year gestation, incisional NPWT has developed so that there are now reasonable grounds for confidence that this approach is widely applicable to a range of indications."
Surgical complications represent a hefty injury and cost burden in the U.S., with infections occurring most often. There are some 300,000 surgical site infections reported each year in the U.S., according to the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention, occurring in an estimated 5% of in-patient surgical procedures and responsible for adding between 7 to 10 extra days to post-surgery hospital stays.
"According to a consensus of the randomized studies, there is a strong argument for the preventative use of NPWT on high-risk, closed surgical incisions," according to Prof. James Stannard, the 1st surgeon ever to report using NPWT on closed incisions. Stannard is also a professor and orthopedic surgeon at the Missouri Orthopaedic Institute at the University of Missouri as well as co-author of the study. "There is a growing awareness of the potential for incisional NPWT to reduce post surgical complications in high risk patients and the related costs involved. We expect that the further development of lower cost, single use NPWT devices will catalyze additional studies."
The researchers looked at studies using both Smith & Nephew’s PICO NPWT system as well as Kinetic Concepts’ Prevena foam, according to the report.