Closure of the "non-healing wound" corresponds with correction of weight loss using the anabolic agent oxandrolone

Ostomy Wound Manage. 1998 Oct;44(10):58-62, 64, 66 passim.


We studied the relationship between restoration of weight loss and healing of the "non-healing wound." Eight consecutive patients with large "non-healing wounds" of an average of 12 months duration, despite good local wound care, were studied. All had a weight loss of 10 percent or more of body weight, mainly lean body mass. Optimizing nutrition (4 weeks) did not significantly increase weight or healing. The addition of the oral anabolic agent oxandrolone increased restoration of weight (4 lbs/week) over a 12-week period. Five wounds completely closed and three closed by 75 percent during this period. We noted a significant correlation (r = 0.67) between restoration of weight loss and closure of the previously "non-healing wound." The rate of wound healing was most prominent after 50 percent of weight loss had been restored. This finding reflects the key relationship between restoring body weight, body protein stores, and wound healing.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Anabolic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Body Weight
  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Debridement
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Nutritional Status
  • Oxandrolone / therapeutic use*
  • Skin Ulcer / drug therapy*
  • Weight Loss*
  • Wound Healing / drug effects*


  • Anabolic Agents
  • Oxandrolone