Background: Skin grafting may be necessary to close nonhealing skin wounds. This report describes a fast and minimally invasive method to produce minced skin suitable for transplantation to skin wounds. The technique was evaluated in an established porcine skin wound healing model and was compared to split-thickness skin grafts and suspensions of cultured and noncultured keratinocytes.
Materials and methods: The study included 90 wounds on 3 pigs. Fluid-treated full-thickness skin wounds were grafted with minced skin, split-thickness skin grafts, noncultured keratinocytes, or cultured keratinocytes. Controls received either fluid or dry treatment. The wound healing process was analyzed in histologies collected at Days 8 to 43 postwounding. Wound contraction was quantified by photoplanimetry.
Results: Wounds transplanted with minced skin and keratinocyte suspension contained several colonies of keratinocytes in the newly formed granulation tissue. During the healing phase, the colonies progressed upward and reepithelialization was accelerated. Minced skin and split-thickness skin grafts reduced contraction as compared to keratinocyte suspensions and saline controls. Granulation tissue formation was also reduced in split-thickness skin-grafted wounds.
Conclusions: Minced skin grafting accelerates reepithelialization of fluid-treated skin wounds. The technique is faster and less expensive than split-thickness skin grafting and keratinocyte suspension transplantation. Minced skin grafting may have implications for the treatment of chronic wounds.