Objective: Histopathological studies have shown a prolonged inflammatory phase in wounds of patients with diabetes, delaying formation of mature granulation tissue and reducing wound tensile strength, making these wounds difficult for physicians to heal. Cryopreserved human umbilical cord (cUC) tissues possess unique anti-inflammatory and anti-scarring properties and have been found to help improve closure of these chronic wounds.
Method: A retrospective chart review was performed to assess the efficacy of cUC as an advanced treatment modality to help promote the closure of chronic DFUs. Overall healing rate, duration to wound closure, and number of cUC applications used to achieve closure were used to assess cUC treatment efficacy.
Results: A total of 32 wounds in 29 patients treated at a single health-care centre were included in the study population The average initial wound area for all wounds was 10.6 ± 2.15cm2. Of the 32 wounds 28 achieved complete epithelialisation for an overall healing rate of 87.5%. Average time to wound closure was 13.8 ± 1.95 weeks with a median of 9 weeks and an average of 1.68 ± 0.18 cUC applications.
Conclusion: The results suggest cUC allograft may be effective in improving the healing of DFUs ulcers as well as potentially reducing the medical costs associated with chronic DFUs due to the low number of applications needed to achieve complete wound closure. Prospective, randomised controlled trials are suggested to better understand the efficacy of cUC in chronic wound healing.
Declaration of interest: Dr Raphael is a paid speaker for Amniox Medical, Inc.
Keywords: diabetic foot ulcer; umbilical cord; wound.