New Wound Gel Takes Hyaluronic Acid A Step Further
As more literature surfaces about the potential benefits of hyaluronic acid in healing difficult wounds, podiatrists are starting to take a closer look at the IPM Wound Gel, a 2.5% sodium hyaluronate-based wound dressing. According to L.A.M. Pharmaceutical, the manufacturer of the product, a study found that 27 patients with 53 refractory ulcers were able to achieve an 89 percent healing rate within 25 weeks of using the gel.
Robert Snyder, DPM, says similar research on the IPM Wound Gel was conducted at the University of Miami.1
“Their data suggests the (IPM Wound Gel) may enhance the rate of epithelialization when compared with other treatment groups such as Hyalofill-F, a placebo and air exposed wounds,” points out Dr. Snyder, a Diplomate of the American Board of Podiatric Surgery and the American Academy of Wound Management.
Dr. Snyder adds that these findings were given further credence in a poster presentation by Reece, et. al. at the Symposium On Advanced Wound Care earlier this year.2
Reviewing The Gel’s Indications And Key Benefits
The company notes that you can use IPM Wound Gel to treat leg, pressure, diabetic and venous stasis ulcers, lacerations and debrided wounds. It adds that patients can use it OTC on minor abrasions and lacerations.
One of the prime benefits of the gel is the company’s use of the proprietary L.A.M. Ionic Polymer Matrix technology, which combines negatively charged hyaluronic acid (HA) with non-ionic hydroxyethylcellulose. According to the company and those who use the gel, this technology promotes extracellular saturation and penetration.
A proponent of the healing potential of HA, Dr. Snyder says HA has the “ability to absorb many times its water weight with potential for removing excessive wound exudates.” He adds that HA is a biomechanical facilitator of angiogenesis, cell migration, remodeling and granulation among others, and notes that the IPM Wound Gel’s 2.5% HA “far exceeds concentrations in other commercially available products.”
Jack Ressler, DPM, concurs, noting that the gel “promotes faster granulation,” and supports the notion of better absorption with HA.
Dr. Ressler, who has a private practice in Florida, also cites the gel’s “ease of use,” which aids in patient compliance and enables them to manage smaller wounds at home.
Assessing Potential Drawbacks
The only drawback of the gel that Dr. Ressler sees is the absence of “antibacterial properties.”
The company’s literature states the gel does not contain topical antibiotics but adds there is no potential for antibiotic resistance or allergic reactions from other topical antibiotics.
The company also warns patients with known hypersensitivity to avian proteins against using this product. Dr. Snyder concurs, noting one downside to the gel is “sensitivity to the product or incorporated preservatives.”
What Results Have DPMs Seen?
Dr. Ressler has used the IPM Wound Gel for over a year, noting that it has produced “very good” results in treating foot ulcers. Dr. Snyder says he has seen a “substantial difference in wound progress” for patients who have used the gel and that his patients were able to achieve complete wound closure.
Citing decreased healing time, both DPMs praise the cost-effectiveness of the IPM Wound Gel.
“The (IPM Wound Gel) is probably better than most in a cost to healing time ratio,” offers Dr. Ressler.
1. Mertz PM, Davis SC, et. al. University of Miami School Of Medicine Porcine Model Study. LAM Internal document 2000.
2. Reece RE, et. al. Hyaluronic acid in an ionic polymer gel matrix helps create an optimal environment for ulcer healing. Poster presentation, SAWC Conference, Baltimore, Maryland, April 2002.