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Ijpmr-december issue opt (d)Management of Over-Granulation in a Diabetic Foot Ulcer:
A Clinical Experience
Krishnaprasad I N1, Soumya V2, Abdulgafoor S3 Abstract
Over-granulation or exuberant granulation tissue is a common problem encountered in the care of chronic wounds,especially that of diabetic foot ulcers. There are several potential options for the treatment of this challenging problem.
Some have an immediate short term effect but may have a longer term unfavourable effect, for example, silver nitrateapplication and surgical excision, which may delay wound healing by reverting the wound back to the inflammatoryphase of healing. Other products, such as foams and silver dressings may offer some effect in short term, but their longterm effects are questionable. The more recent research supports Haelan cream and tape as an efficacious and costeffective treatment for over-granulation in a variety of wound types. The future of treating over-granulation may lie withsurgical lasers, since lasers can not only remove over-granulation tissue but will also cauterise small blood vessels andare very selective, leaving healing cells alone while removing excess and unhealthy tissue.
Recently Drs Lain and Carrington have demonstrated the utility of imiquimod, an immune-modulator with anti-angiogenicproperties, in the treatment exuberant granulation tissue, in a patient with long standing diabetic foot ulcer, resistant toother forms of therapy. We adapted a modified version of their protocol in the management of a similar patient in ourhospital and achieved a good result in lesser time than the former.
Keywords: Over-granulation, diabetic foot ulcer, imiquimod.
granulation is defined as granulation tissue which is inexcess of required amount needed to replace the tissue Granulation tissue is composed largely of newly deficit. It often results in a raised mass above the wound.
growing capillaries. If granulation is present in the wound, it is an indication that the wound is healing, and It may be a difficult condition to manage as the presence a dense network of capillaries, large number of of such tissue will prevent or slow epithelial migration fibroblasts, macrophages and new formed collagen fibres across the wound, and thus delay wound healing.
will be present. However, sometimes the granulation will Over-granulation usually presents in wounds healing by ‘over grow’ beyond the surface of the wound and this is secondary intention. It is clinically recognised by its called ‘hyper-granulation’ or ‘over-granulation’. Over- friable red, often shiny and soft appearance that is abovethe level of the surrounding skin and can be healthy orunhealthy. Healthy over-granulation tissue presents as 1MD, DNB, MNAMS (PMR), Assistant Professor moist, pinky-red tissue that may bleed easily. Unhealthy over-granulation tissue presents as either a dark red or a Government Medical College, Kozhikode, Kerala pale bluish purple uneven mass rising above the level of the surrounding skin which also bleeds very easily.
Krishnaprasad I N, Soumya V, Abdulgafoor S. Management of over- However, whether healthy or unhealthy, the wound granulation in a diabetic foot ulcer: A clinical experience. IJPMR
March 2013; Vol 24 (1): 19-22.
generally will not heal because, epithelial tissue will find it difficult to migrate across the surface and contraction Dr Krishnaprasad IN, MD, DNB, MNAMS (PMR), Assistant will be halted at the edge of the swelling. The healthy Professor, Government Medical College, Kozhikode, KeralaEmail: firstname.lastname@example.org granulation tissue has the potential to reduce naturally Received on 08/01/2013, Accepted on 25/03/2013 and to eventually heal without intervention although thismay take longer than if it is treated.
Particular care should be taken in differential diagnosis, smelling discharge and caused difficulty in donning a as a fungating malignant ulcer can mimic a hypertrophic foot wear. Also it bled whenever the patient walked barefooted for a few distances. She had symmetricsensory peripheral neuropathy of both lower extremities.
Peripheral pulsations were all normal in the lowerextremities. Because of the bleeding mass and ulcer, the A 55 years old female patient, diabetic, on insulin therapy patient was physically, socially and psychologically for the past few years, presented with a non-healing ulcer incapacitated. She had undergone multiple therapies, over the past 6 months, over the inferolateral aspect of including indigenous treatment, but none has given her a permanent cure. She was advised surgical removal of On examination the ulcer was about 5×5 cms, with the excess granulation tissue by her diabetologist, but slightly indurated and unhealthy margins. The ulcer floor she was not willing for surgery. Then she was referred had a dusky red fungating mass filling almost the entire to our department for any non-surgical options in her floor, slightly indurated, fragile and adherent to the ulcer base. The mass was not tender but has occasional foul We did a thorough literature search for the possiblemanagement options and came across many differentoptions, many of which she already had tried, and manywhich were not locally available. Among those methods,the utility of topical imiquimod, an immunomodulatorwith anti-angiogenic properties was demonstated by Lainand Carrington4, in a patient with a diabetic foot ulcerwith overgranulation. Their treatment protocol consistedof 4 days/week regimen of topical imiquimod at night,an enzymatic debriding agent for the remaining 3 daysand morning application of mupirocin cream. Theyreported a good ulcer healing in 7 months time.
Imiquimod cream was locally available, since it is usedby dermatologists in the management of perianal andgenital warts, actinic keratosis, basal cell carcinoma,keloids etc. We discussed this treatment option with thepatient and caregivers, with explanation of the benefitsand possible side-effects and the need for a strictcompliance to the regimen. We adopted a modifiedprotocol since enzymatic debriding agents were notlocally available. We used topical imiquimod 3 days per Fig 1- Ulcer Pre treatment
week and for the remaining 4 days, special moisture Fig 2- 6 Weeks Follow-up
Fig 3- 12 Weeks Follow-up
Fig 4- 18 Weeks Follow-up
Fig 5- 24 Weeks Follow-up
Management of over-granulation in a diabetic foot ulcer – Krishnaprasad I N et al retaining dressings were given to promote autolytic over-granulation tissue. Pressure from foam was then debridement. Every morning a topical antiseptic replaced by the suggestion of double application of preparation containing nano-crystalline silver was hydrocolloid. Controversially an occlusive dressing is applied. Before starting treatment, malignancy and thought to be a possible cause of over-granulation but infection were ruled out by appropriate biopsy and potentially the pressure of the double application may culture methods. Correct application method was taught with special care to protect surrounding skin and the Morison et al7 noted that silver nitrate reduced fibroblast patient was asked to review every 6 weeks. We also production. However, the use of silver nitrate directly emphasised the importance of proper foot care and reduces fibroblast proliferation and is therefore, not recommended for prolonged or excessive use8 and We reviewed the patient every 6 weeks (Figs 2-5) and should never be considered first-line therapy and the progress was assessed. The unhealthy edge of the should only ever be used with great care for the more ulcer was curetted at each visit to improve the chance of stubborn area of granulation. This is particularly re-epithelisation. Blood sugar level was optimised and important as chemical burns have been reported and more nutritional anaemia was corrected. There was a dramatic likely to occur with longer application times. When it isnecessary, a topical barrier preparation such as petroleum reduction in the size of hypertrophied granulation tissue jelly or white soft paraffin should be applied to protect over a period of 12 weeks, and by 18 weeks the the normal skin surrounding the area of over- epithelisation was almost complete covering the entire Another highly successful method of treatment would The patient was extremely happy with the result and had be a short course of a topical steroid to suppress the very good functional improvement. She did not complain inflammatory process10,11 and tri-adcortyl was often the of any local or systemic adverse reaction during the chosen steroid to be used in this case. However, it is no therapy. She was given a proper foot wear and instructed longer recommended for this purpose as it contains auromycin, an antibiotic, and it is indiscriminate use ofsuch antibiotic therapy that may have initiated MRSA.
Reducing the bacterial burden with auromycin may be There are many treatment options for over-granulation one of the possible reasons for the success of tri-adcortyl with limited research to support their use or to clearly in reducing over-granulation as reducing the bacteria load suggest which is the most effective.
would remove the infection that stimulated the tissue toovergrow while the steroid reduces the inflammation that A “wait and see” approach was suggested by Dunford3 but the last decade has seen some significantdevelopments in this area of tissue viability and a more Lloyd-Jones12 reported resolution of over-granulation pro-active approach should be taken.
tissue using a silver hydrofibre dressing, but this tooksome weeks to resolve which is much longer than other Inflammatory response may be related to infection and the use of an antibacterial dressing such as sliver,cadexomer iodine, honey, PHMB (polyhexamethylene Haelan tape13 is a transparent, plastic surgical tape, biguanide) can assist with managing local colonisation impregnated with 4 mg/cm2 fludroxycortide, which and reduce the potential and also reduce the over- allows steady distribution of the steroid to the affected site. Fludroxycortide is a fluorinated, synthetic,moderately potent corticosteroid. As with other topical The earliest recommendation for treating over- steroids, the therapeutic effect is primarily the result of granulation was foam. Harris and Rolstad6 reported the its anti-inflammatory, antimitotic and antisynthetic findings of a prospective non-controlled correlation study with 10 patients and 12 wounds using a polyurethanefoam dressing to reduce over-granulation tissue. The Because granulation tissue is very delicate, it can results demonstrated a reduction in granulation tissue.
sometimes be removed by wiping with a cotton swab.
It was concluded that the pressure of the foam on the However, this should only be undertaken by an granulation tissue reduced the oedema and flattened the experienced person, as the wound could be traumatised and healing could be further delayed. Surgical 4. Lain EL, Carrington PR. Imiquimod treatment of exuberant debridement is also an option, but should only be granulation tissue in a non-healing diabetic ulcer. Arch Dermatol
2005; 141: 1368-70.
undertaken by an experienced surgeon.
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13. Layton A. Reviewing the use of fludroxycortide tape (Haelan Interferon achieves its anti-angiogenic effects by tilting Tape) in dermatology practice. Typharm Dermatology 2004.
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Indian Association of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation Venue: IC & SR Building IIT Campus Guindy, Chennai Joint Organising Secretaries: Dr. T. S. Chellakumaraswamy, Dr. B. Prem Anand
Mind the gap: Access to ARV medication, rights and the politics of scale inSouth AfricaNorwegian Institute for Urban and Regional Research, Gaustadalléen 21, Oslo, NorwayGlobal access to anti-retroviral medication (ARVs) has increased exponentially in recent years. Asa relatively recent phenomenon for the global South, much knowledge is being added, but analysis of‘access’ to ARVs remains