Maggot therapy in wound management in modern era and a review of published literature

J Pharm Pract. 2011 Feb;24(1):89-93. doi: 10.1177/0897190010366938.


Maggot therapy is an old remedy, which is being looked into with renewed interest. The use of medicinal maggots was approved by Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as a medical device in 2004. Maggot therapy appears to be efficacious, well tolerated, and cost-effective. Because American Medical Association (AMA) and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) released reimbursement coding guidelines with regards to maggot therapy, there is a potential for a wider use of maggot therapy in United States in the near future. Several mechanisms of action suggested for maggots in debriding wounds are discussed. While maggot therapy demonstrated effectiveness in necrotic wounds, not all wound types respond well to maggot therapy. Future large, randomized, well-designed studies would help better delineate the place of maggot therapy among other options for wound care, and determine whether maggot therapy should be initiated earlier in the course of treatment, or continued to be used as a last resort.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Debridement / methods*
  • Debridement / trends
  • Disease Management
  • Humans
  • Larva*
  • Necrosis / pathology
  • Necrosis / therapy
  • Wound Healing* / physiology