From the Journals

Collagen powder deemed noninferior to primary closure for punch-biopsy healing



Collagen powder may be noninferior to primary closure for healing punch biopsy–induced wounds and possibly leads to improved early cosmetic outcomes and accelerated wound maturation, according to Azam Qureshi of the University of Maryland, Baltimore, and associates.

In a small pilot study published in Journal of Drugs in Dermatology, eight volunteers (mean age, 37 years) received a 4-mm punch biopsy on each thigh. One wound was managed with primary closure, the other with daily application of collagen powder. The wounds were biopsied at 4 weeks for histopathologic analysis, and the study subjects rated pain, itch, and treatment preferences at 1, 2, 4, 6, and 12 weeks.

The size of wounds treated with collagen was reduced by 28.95% at 1 week, 55.76% at 2 weeks, and 95.94% at 4 weeks; six of the eight collagen-treated wounds were completely healed at 4 weeks. Wound size was reduced by 75.71% 1 week after the second biopsy, much faster than the initial healing. In addition to collagen, one patient required hyfrecation for hemostasis, which did not affect results; three of the eight subjects rated the collagen treatment as “annoying,” but no one rated it as “difficult,” and patients generally regarded collagen treatment as more time consuming.

The histopathologic analysis showed epidermal reepithelialization in collagen-treated wounds and wounds managed with primary closure, with more organized granulation tissue in the collagen-treated wounds. Similar pain and itch ratings were reported between wound types, and both patients and blinded dermatologists observing the study preferred the appearance of collagen-treated wounds.

“Future research elucidating the optimal duration of collagen therapy is needed, as less than 4 weeks may be sufficient. Shortened treatment courses would decrease the cost and effort required by patients. Future studies should also investigate the efficacy of collagen powder in healing larger wounds and in comparison to healing by secondary intention,” the investigators wrote.

CPN Biosciences funded the study. No authors had relevant financial disclosures.

SOURCE: Qureshi A et al. J Drug Dermatol. 2019;18(7):667-73

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