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J Plast Surg Hand Surg. 2013 Jun;47(3):180-4. doi: 10.3109/2000656X.2012.748667. Epub 2013 Apr 29.

Influence of continuous or intermittent negative pressure on bacterial proliferation potency in vitro.

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Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Hyogo College of Medicine, Hyogo 663-8501, Japan.


Negative pressure wound therapy is helpful and effective in the treatment of intractable skin ulcers and defects, not only acute wounds. However, application of negative pressure wound therapy for an infected wound is still controversial. The authors developed an in-vitro model of negative pressure wound therapy and investigated the influence of various types of negative pressure environment on the proliferation potency of non-pathogenic Escherichia coli. E. coli in Luria-Bertani liquid media was cultured at 37°C under different environments, which were normal atmosphere in group 1, continuous negative pressure of 75 mmHg in group 2, intermittent negative pressure of 75 mmHg with cycle time of 1 minute aspiration and 1 minute abeyance in group 3, with the one of 3 minutes aspiration and 3 minutes abeyance in group 4. The relative amounts of E. coli in each group were investigated at different times. The proliferation potency of E. coli was higher under negative pressure than under normal atmosphere; higher under intermittent negative pressure than under continuous negative pressure; and higher under intermittent negative pressure with a short cycle than with a long cycle. It is important to consider the possibility that the intermittent and continuous mode of negative pressure wound therapy may promote proliferation of bacteria in an infected wound with no blood flow like necrotic tissue.

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