Washington: Scientists have developed a special wound dressing which they claim can significantly reduce scar tissue caused by incisions during a surgery. Results of animal tests and of an early clinical trial of the dressing were "stunning", Michael Longaker of Stanford University, who led the research, said. "It was a surprisingly effective treatment." After sutures are removed, the edges of a healing incision are pulled in different directions by the taut, surrounding skin, causing scar tissue to thicken and spread.
They deliberately chose to test the dressing on incisions closed with high tension: If the dressing could reduce scarring in such cases, it would surely work on any other kind of incision. One side of the abdomen-wide incision on each patient was treated with the stress-shielding dressing; the other half was not. A panel of three plastic surgeons unaffiliatedWith the research, as well as a panel of three people not in the medical profession, acted as judges. On a 100-point scale, the lay panel scored the appearance of stress-shielded wounds an average of 13.2 points higher than the control wounds. The expert panel scored the scar appearance of the treated incisions 39.2 points higher. In both of these analyses, the difference between the treated side and the control side were highly significant, the researchers said. "Larger clinical trials are being planned to include greater ethnic diversity within the patient population and to determine the optimal range of stress-shielding forces foranatomic region and dimension-specific wounds," say the scientists. PTI
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