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Maggot Therapy for Removal of Non-healing Wounds

14 August 2010


Background: Maggot therapy has been used for centuries for treatment of non-healing soft tissue wounds. Maggot therapy disappeared for a while due to newly available antibiotics and improved surgical techniques. Recently it has made a comeback and is now considered medicinal maggots. The clinical question of whether to use maggot therapy for the treatment of non-healing wounds in comparison to more standardized therapy is resurfacing among clinicians and patients.

Methods: A systematic review of current literature over the last 10 years on the efficacy of maggot debridement therapy was conducted through an extensive online article search using MEDLINE, CINAHL, and EBM reviews.

Results: Of the five studies that were evaluated in this review, all showed that maggot debridement therapy was effective in debriding wounds more quickly than conventional treatment. Healing time was either equal to or shorter than standardized methods. There were quite a few limitations such as the inability to carry out randomized controlled trials, inadequate number of articles found and a small number of subjects integrated in each study.

Conclusion: Studies in the past prove that maggot therapy is effective in debridement of non-healing chronic wounds. This leads to enhancement of healing time and suggests that this technique is an effective and safe method of debridement for patients that are appropriate for this treatment.


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