Spray-on Skin May Promote Wound Healing
Experts Predict Role for Spray-on Skin in Slow-Healing Wounds
Follow-up Studies Ongoing continued...
The need for new products to treat these wounds is tremendous, Matthias Augustin, MD, says in an email. "A significant number of patients fail to respond to any therapy."
Augustin, the director of the Institute for Health Services Research in Dermatology and Nursing at the University Clinics of Hamburg in Hamburg, Germany, wrote an editorial accompanying the new study.
"New treatments with improved healing and healing rates are needed to reduce the burden of ulcers for patients, [and] while more research is needed I believe that this product could ultimately make a significant difference for these patients."
John Lantis, MD, is one of the investigators on the study. "This could be used in any place that artificial skin is needed, such as diabetic foot ulcers," says Lantis, who is the chief of the vascular surgery division at St. Luke's-Roosevelt Hospital in New York City.
It will not be a stand-alone treatment. "If you have a diabetic foot ulcer, you will still have to wear special diabetic shoes," he says. "It's not like you can just spray it on and go about your business. It will always be used in conjunction with current standard of care."
It seems to perform better than any other artificial skin products out there or in the pipeline, Lantis says.
Other Uses for Spray-on Skin Therapy
Maja Zaric, MD, says there may well be a role for this product. She is an interventional cardiologist at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City. "The spray can be applied in various doses and it is very user-friendly, unlike a skin graft."
Still, not every person with a venous leg ulcer would benefit from the new spray-on skin. "Those who would benefit the most have extremely large ulcers and decreased blood flow," she says. Before treating these wounds, Zaric always does a vein-mapping study to see which veins are causing the problem.
Neil Sadick, MD, is a New York City dermatologist and clinical professor of dermatology at Weill Cornell Medical College. "This treatment provides a cocktail of cells and growth factors," he says. "These ingredients can stimulate new collagen, which would improve wound healing and also help recover the skin." Collagen is the main structural protein in skin.
"It could well be helpful in wound healing and it could be helpful in any area where we need to replace the skin surface," Sadick says.