Negative pressure wound therapy (NPWT) is a treatment for acute and chronic wounds. The treatment requires a vacuum source to create a continuous or intermittent form of negative pressure inside the wound. Doing so removes fluid, exudates, and infectious materials to aid the wound in healing and closure.

NPWT has a rich history. It’s one of the oldest forms of medicinal therapy and dates back centuries. Wound drainage has been implemented for even longer – reported cases trace back to 600 BC in Assyria and Babylon – and vacuuming via heated copper bowls began in 400 BC by the Greeks. The technique and design began to advance as cupping spread west over the centuries, and in 1907, Dr. E. Klapp first used a suction pump on a wound. By the 1970’s, doctors were using drainage canisters help with tissue repair.

In 1985, Dr. Katherine Jeter developed a unique system of products to apply negative pressure to a patient’s wound bed. She pioneered the use of suction to treat wounds utilizing a gauze dressing and wall suction. Dr. Mark Chariker aided in a clinical study and furthered this new revolutionary healing process. They understood that the application of negative pressure to a wound bed had extraordinary effects on a patient’s ability to heal, and they published their findings and advanced the art of wound care in 1989.

Today, NPWT is a widely adopted treatment helping to heal wounds around the world.  Our extriCARE® NPWT system offers a new approach to this healing therapy. The lightweight device allows patients to experience wound healing while being mobile and living more normally without being bedridden.

Sources: Wound, Ostomy & Continence Nurses Society™, U.S. Food & Drug Administration

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