Negative Pressure Wound Therapy in the Treatment of Diabetic Foot Ulcers: A Systematic Review of the Literature

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Negative pressure wound therapy (NPWT) is an option for management of complex wounds such as diabetic foot ulcers; therefore, the nursing literature from 2000 to 2010 was reviewed for studies comparing clinical outcomes for diabetic foot ulcers treated with NPWT and those treated with standard moist wound therapy (SMWT). PubMed and OVID databases were explored using the following search terms: vacuum-assisted closure, NPWT, diabetic wounds, and standard most wound therapy. Research studies to judge efficacy were limited to the results from studies of experimental studies with randomized clinical trials on patients with diabetic foot wounds as the inclusion criteria. Four studies were identified that met the established criteria. Despite variations in patient population, methodology, and additional outcome variables studied, NPWT systems were shown to be more effective than SMWT with regard to proportion of healed wounds and rate of wound closure.

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