Negative pressure wound therapy (NPWT) entails application of a homogeneous vacuum to the wound via a sponge. Published studies have described its use in treating urine-induced necrosis, burn injuries, and septic peritonitis, as well as for augmentation of shear injuries and local flaps. Few clinical trials, however, compare NPWT to controls.
This retrospective, multicenter study classified 50 dogs undergoing open-wound treatment into 3 groups: conventional bandage with nonadherent gauze (Group A), NPWT (Group B), and foam dressing (Group C). Pairs of patients were matched between Groups A and C (n = 7 pairs) and Groups B and C (n = 18 pairs) based on wound conformation, localization, and underlying cause. Pairs were compared between the groups in terms of duration of previous treatment, time to closure, and complications.
Signalment, antibiotic use, antiseptic treatment, and bacterial status of wounds were comparable between groups. Duration of previous treatment was significantly higher in Group B than Group C, although no significant difference was seen between Groups A and B. Time to wound closure was significantly shorter in Group B than Group C; time to closure in group C patients was significantly shorter than Group A. Wounds treated with NPWT had significantly fewer complications and were significantly less septic during treatment than wounds treated with foam dressing. This study substantiates the use of NPWT as an effective means of local infection control in wound dressing.