AHRQ Releases Study on Negative Pressure Wound Therapy
Thursday, October 2, 2014
Posted by: Becky Dryden
On September 15, 2014, the U.S.
Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality's
(AHRQ), released a comprehensive
technology assessment study on the effectiveness of negative pressure wound therapy
(NPWT) on the treatment of chronic wounds in the home care setting.
The report is intended to help
health care decision-makers; patients
and clinicians, health system leaders, and policymakers, make well informed decisions
and thereby improve the quality of health care services. This report may be
used, in whole or in part, as the basis for development of clinical practice guidelines and other quality enhancement
tools, or as a basis for reimbursement
and coverage policies.
The goal of
the study was to systematically review the efficacy and
safety of negative pressure wound therapy (NPWT)
for treatment of chronic wounds in the home setting. The authors included
studies examining the use of NPWT in patients with chronic
wounds, including venous leg ulcers, arterial
leg ulcers, diabetic foot ulcers, pressure ulcers, and mixed etiology chronic
wounds. They retrieved
5,912 citations, and found seven studies which met the criteria for inclusion.
Six of the studies compared NPWT devices to other wound care methods. One study compared two different NPWT devices.
the study's authors were
unable to draw any
firm conclusions about the efficacy or safety of NPWT for
the treatment of chronic wounds in the home setting due
to insufficient evidence. The authors stated "Though NPWT has been used across the wound care spectrum, significant
research gaps remain. Standardization of wound care research protocols, such as providing
consistency in comparator groups, robust randomized study designs, larger trials, and common
definitions of outcomes, would be helpful in providing evidence to inform decisions about the
use of NPWT."
A link to the
study can be found here: Negative Pressure Wound Therapy Technologies For Chronic Wound Care in
the Home Setting
Additionally, AHRQ, has provided a link to comments that were provided
to the group during release of the draft version of the study. Those comments can be found here.