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Larval therapy for venous leg ulcers - Literature review Example

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There are various nursing management techniques for venous leg ulcers, and these interventions range from medical, surgical, to alternative therapies. One of these alternative therapies is the larval therapy, where maggots are placed on the wound. …
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Larval therapy for venous leg ulcers
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Download file to see previous pages The maggots then proceed to consume the infections present in the wound and eventually ‘clean’ up the ulceration. This study shall provide a critical appraisal of larval therapy for venous leg ulcers. Initially, the background and aetiology of the disease shall be provided, followed by a critical appraisal of eight studies pertinent to this topic. This study is being carried out in order to establish a scholarly and comprehensive assessment of available literature on larval therapy on venous leg ulcers; it also seeks to assess the future general applicability of this therapy in the clinical practice. Venous leg ulcers are chronic and non-healing wounds or ulcerations on the leg or foot (NHS Choices, 2010). It is usually accompanied with symptoms of pain, itching, and inflammation in the affected area. Venous leg ulcers are seen when there is a persistent high pressure of blood in the veins of the legs which can later cause damage to the skin. Venous leg ulcers affect 1 in 500 individuals in the UK with rates increasing sharply with age (NHS Choices, 2010). About one person in every 50 over the age of 80 has a high risk for venous leg ulcers. Risk factors for this disease include immobility, obesity, advancing age, and varicosities (NHS Choices, 2010). The prognosis for venous leg ulcers is more or less good, however, with diabetic and elderly patients, the management may take longer. Nevertheless, with appropriate treatment, the healing can be ensured. Venous leg ulcers are caused by damage to the veins located in the legs (NHS Choices, 2010). Venous problems can be seen with the valves in the veins improperly functioning. As a result, blood flows backwards into the previous valves causing pooling in the lower trunks of the veins. With increased pressure in the veins, damage to the veins, and later the skin can become apparent (NHS Choices, 2010). Constant high blood pressure in the legs can cause leaks which then cause swelling and damage to the skin, thereby leading to the ulcerations. Critical appraisal In the study by Dumville, et.al., (2009), the authors clearly presented the goals of their research which was basically to compare the clinical effectiveness of larval therapy with standard debridement techniques for necrotic leg ulcers. The relevance and importance of the research was indicated by the authors, mostly in relation to cost effectiveness of various therapies for venous leg ulcers (Dumville, et.al., 2009). This goal is relevant because of the fact that the cost of medical interventions has increased and the need to decrease and manage medical costs for patients and for health care in general has become a more imperative requirement in the current age of health and economic crisis. The introduction and the literature review were able to establish the concept and the idea behind the research, including its possible benefits to the clinical practice. The hypothesis has not however been clearly stated, but can be implied from the initial chapters of the study. The author implies the higher benefits which can be gained from the use of larval therapy for venous leg ulcers. The main terms of the study are defined and can easily be deduced from the authors’ presentation. The research also presented a well focused question, including a clearly defined population specifically defined through the inclusion and exclusion criteria. The interventions to be used by the authors were also specified with specific expected outcomes defined. In assessing the design chosen, the ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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