Can Traditional Herbal Medicine Help Heal Chronic Diabetic Foot Ulcers?

Author(s): 
Alexander M. Reyzelman, DPM, and Irina Bazarov, MS

Pertinent Case Studies In Diabetic Wound Care

Below are two clinical cases of successful WinVivo wound ointment use that are representative of the results we typically obtain in our practice. Both patients suffered from severe microvascular complications of longstanding type 2 diabetes mellitus and had chronic, non-healing neuropathic foot ulcers that were recalcitrant to standard wound therapies. In both cases, short-term treatment with WinVivo wound ointment appeared to reverse the stalled healing process by decreasing inflammation and promoting epithelialization and contraction of the wound.

   A 69-year-old male presented to our clinic with an infected neuropathic ulcer on the dorsum of his forefoot. The patient had a past medical history of poorly controlled type 2 diabetes, congestive heart failure and severe leg edema. The ulcer has likely originated secondary to shoe irritation.

   Following debridement of necrotic tissue, the patient started on IV antibiotics and negative pressure wound therapy (NPWT) for two months. After some improvement in wound size, we ceased using NPWT and started the patient on WinVivo. We saw the patient in clinic weekly, assessed the wound and applied the wound ointment at each visit and every three days thereafter via home healthcare. We dressed the wound with sterile gauze and a Jones compression dressing.

   After two months of WinVivo application, the wound demonstrated an increase in granulation tissue formation and decreased amounts of exudate, biofilm and malodor. Since starting WinVivo treatment, the percentage of wound closure, estimated as the change in wound area relative to initial wound size, was 94 percent.

   The second patient is a 50-year-old male, who had undergone a transmetatarsal amputation due to a progressive foot infection. He presented to our clinic with a non-healing ulcer at his distal forefoot stump following surgical wound dehiscence and a series of unsuccessful skin graft applications. After a revision of the transmetatarsal amputation, the patient started on NPWT for two months.

   After stopping NPWT, we began treating him with topical WinVivo applications. The patient applied the wound ointment at home daily and presented to the clinic weekly for follow-up. After 3.5 months of treatment with WinVivo, the wound exhibited significant size reduction as well as a decreased amount of exudate, malodor and peri-ulcer erythema. The percentage of wound closure since the start of WinVivo treatment was 91 percent.

In Conclusion

WinVivo Healing Balm is a promising new topical treatment for chronic diabetic foot ulcers. By combining several traditional Chinese medicinal herbs in one formulation, WinVivo offers benefits of anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antimicrobial and analgesic properties. These properties simultaneously address the complex issues that occur in chronic wounds. The unique combination in this product is something we have not seen in other wound care products available today. WinVivo clearly deserves a closer look as a valid alternative to more expensive treatments currently on the market.

   Dr. Reyzelman is an Associate Professor in the Department of Medicine at California School of Podiatric Medicine at Samuel Merritt University in Oakland, Calif. He is the Co-Director of the University of California, San Francisco Center for Limb Preservation.

   Ms. Bazarov is a fourth-year student at the California School of Podiatric Medicine at Samuel Merritt University in Oakland, Calif.

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