The clinical outcomes of xenografts in the treatment of burn patients: a systematic review and meta-analysis

Eur J Med Res. 2023 Nov 16;28(1):524. doi: 10.1186/s40001-023-01505-9.


Background: Although autografts are not feasible in patients with extensive burn wounds, allografts and xenografts can be used for temporary coverage. In this systematic review and meta-analysis, we compared the outcomes of xenografts and the standard treatment of burn wounds.

Methods: International online databases were searched for English articles comparing xenografts with routine treatment in the burn patients. The random-effects model was used to estimate standardized mean differences (SMD) or odds ratios (OR) with a 95% confidence interval (CI).

Results: From a total of 7144 records, 14 studies were included in our review after screening by title and abstracts followed by full-texts. No significant difference in hospital stays was found between the mammalian xenografts and control groups (SMD [95% CI] = - 0.18 [- 0.54-0.18]). The mean number of dressing changes was significantly lower in both mammalian xenografts compared to the controls (SMD [95% CI] = - 1.01 [- 1.61-- 0.41]) and fish xenografts compared to controls (SMD [95% CI] = - 6.16 [- 7.65-- 4.66]). In the fish xenografts, re-epithelialization time was significantly lower compared to controls (SMD [95% CI] = - 1.18 [- 2.23-- 0.14]).

Conclusions: Xenografts showed a significantly lower number of dressing changes and fish xenografts showed significant benefit in re-epithelialization compared to routine treatment. The beneficial results of xenografts suggest further research in the use of different types of xenografts in patients with extensive burn.

Keywords: Animal transplant; Burn; Wound; Xenografts.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Burns* / therapy
  • Heterografts
  • Humans