Background & aims: : We hypothesize that wound closure in trauma patients with disorders in wound healing is accelerated by supplementation of antioxidant micronutrients and glutamine.
Methods: In a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial, 20 trauma patients with disorders in wound healing were orally supplemented with antioxidant micronutrients (ascorbic acid, α-tocopherol, β-carotene, zinc, selenium) and glutamine (verum) or they received isoenergetic amounts of maltodextrine (placebo) for 14 days. Plasma/serum levels of micronutrients, glutamine, and vascular endothelial growth factor-A (VEGF-A) were determined before and after supplementation. In the wound, several parameters of microcirculation were measured. Time from study entry to wound closure was recorded.
Results: Micronutrients in plasma/serum did not change except for selenium which increased in the verum group (1.1 ± 0.2 vs. 1.4 ± 0.2 μmol/l; P = 0.009). Glutamine decreased only in the placebo group (562 ± 68 vs. 526 ± 55 μmol/l; P = 0.047). The prevalence of hypovitaminoses and the concentration of VEGF-A did not change. Considering microcirculation, only O(2)-saturation decreased in the placebo group (56.7 ± 23.4 vs. 44.0 ± 24.0 [arbitrary units]; P = 0.043). Wound closure occurred more rapidly in the verum than in the placebo group (35 ± 22 vs. 70 ± 35 d; P = 0.01).
Conclusions: Time to wound closure can be shortened by oral antioxidant and glutamine containing supplements in trauma patients with disorders in wound healing.
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