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Phototherapy Can Help Heal Stubborn Diabetic Leg Ulcers

Three-quarters of difficult-to-treat ulcers in study group were 90 to 100 percent healed in 90 days

WEDNESDAY, July 22 (HealthDay News) -- Phototherapy can speed up the healing of diabetic leg ulcers that have not responded to other treatments, according to a report in the August issue of Lasers in Surgery and Medicine.

Debora G. Minatel, P.T., of the University of Ribeirao Preto in Brazil, and colleagues randomized two groups of diabetes patients with a total of 23 leg ulcers to treatment consisting of wound cleaning, dressing with 1 percent silver sulfadiazine cream, and either phototherapy with a Dynatron Solaris 705 device (study group) or treatment with sham phototherapy (control group). Healing was monitored at 15, 30, 45, 60, 75 and 90 days.

The researchers found that the study group had 79.2 percent faster healing than the control group by the thirtieth day. By day 90, 58.3 percent of the study group was fully healed and 75 percent had achieved 90 to 100 percent healing. Only one of the ulcers in the control group had healed fully by 90 days.

"Our results mandate the conclusion that the combination of 660 and 890 nm light used in this study promotes tissue granulation and rapid healing of diabetic ulcers that failed to respond to other forms of treatment. Further study with a larger sample size is warranted," the authors write.

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