The Use of an Advanced Fluorescence Imaging System to Target Wound Debridement, Decrease Bioburden, Improve Healing Rates, and Provide Positive Revenues in an Outpatient Wound Care SettingWindy Cole, DPM; and Stacey Coe, CRC
Introduction: Optimal wound bed preparation consists of regular debridement to remove devitalized tissues, reduce bacterial load, and establish an environment that can promote healing. A novel point-of-care fluorescence imaging system (MolecuLight i:X; MolecuLight, Toronto, ON, Canada) aids in bacteria-targeted debridement and bioburden management in the treatment of chronic wounds. This observational case series investigated use of this imaging device to target debridement and promote wound healing.
Methods: Eleven chronic lower extremity wounds were imaged weekly with the device for (1) bacterial fluorescence and (2) wound area over 12 weeks or until healing or lost follow-up. Images positive for bacterial fluorescence (regions of red or cyan) were used to guide debridement to those specific regions. Data from each assessment were categorized as fluorescence positive assessment or fluorescence negative assessment, and slopes of wound area weekly percent changes were calculated from linear regressions for each categorization.
Results: Of the 11 wounds, 6 healed during this 12-week assessment. At week 1, average wound area was 8.1 cm2 and 10 of 11 wounds exhibited red fluorescence. Bacterial fluorescence persisted, on average, for 3.7 weeks, and no wounds healed or entered a healing trajectory while red fluorescence was present. Information gained from fluorescence images provided information to better debride the affected area to the appropriate level. In 9% of cases, this additional debridement resulted in a higher billing code. On average, weekly percent change in wound area increased (6.5 ± 10.8) during periods with bacterial fluorescence and significantly decreased (-27.7 ± 10.1; P = .048) once targeted debridement and other treatments had eliminated the fluorescing bacteria.
Conclusions: Results suggest fluorescence had a beneficial effect on reducing bacterial load and promoting wound healing. This case series suggests incorporation of fluorescence guidance into standard of care could result in healing trajectories, improved patient outcomes, more appropriate treatment, and increased revenues in the outpatient wound centers.
*This abstract was presented as an Oral Abstract at the 2019 Symposium on Advanced Wound Care Fall.
Additional Oral and Poster Abstracts are Available on the Wound Care Learning Network.