Magnetic bandages can help wounds heal faster

Article from the Daily Mail (p44), Tuesday, August 2, 2005

A MAGNETIC leg wrap has been successfully used to treat wounds that have failed to heal for years.

In medical trials, patients who have suffered leg ulcers for years found that they healed in just over three months when they used the new British-made wrap, which is already being used by the NHS in some areas.

Painful leg ulcers affect around 100,000 people in the UK at one time Doctors found that seven out of ten patents who used the magnetic wrap in the trial had no new outbreaks of leg ulcers.

‘The double blind trial results were dramatic,’ says Harley Street physician Dr Nyjon Eccles, who led the studies. ‘Beneficial effects were seen on ulcers that were chronic failing to heal by other usual treatments.

‘The results of a bigger survey, where 211 patients were to found to have no recurrence of their ulcers after nearly two year of wearing the device over night , adds further credibility to our initial double blind trial results.’

Leg ulcers are often the result of poor circulation. Patients with diabetes and mobility problems are among those most at risk.

Poor circulation means that insufficient oxygen and nutrients get through to the wound to heal it. As a result, patients can suffer with wounds that fail to heal for years. The wounds can be painful, and have to be continually treated at a cost to the NHS of around £300 million a year.

Until now, the main form of prevention has been pressure stockings and sometimes surgery.

The new wrap is based on the ideal that leg ulcers will heal naturally if the body can supply enough oxygen and nutrients to affected area. According to doctors who led the trials, it works in a number of ways.

Electrical currents, which generate magnetic fields, can encourage wounds to heal by stimulating more collagen to form, so acceler­ating the healing process. The wrap also combats infection and boosts circulation, allowing more oxygen to getting into the cells.

Electrical and magnetic currents may also cause reduction of local tissue acidity – a cause of pain.

The ulcer wrap, made by Magnopulse, has four powerful neodymium magnets which set up a magnetic field around the wound. A trial involving 26 patients and an analysis of the treatment given to 160 randomly-selected users of the wrap, both reported in the Journal of Wound Care, Show it can be highly effective.

The average time the patients had suffered with ulcers was 49 months The wrap had been worn for an average of four months at the time of the analysis. Key findings were significant reduction in ulcer size of 68 per cent. Forty-one per cent of the patients had complete ulcer healing, in an average of 3.9 months. Seventy-two per cent of those with associated swelling had a reduction in leg pain.

Peter Hanslow, 60, from Sitting-bourne, Kent, had conventional treatment for around a year for his leg ulcer before trying the wrap.

‘I had a job where I was driving 1,000 miles a week, wasn’t exercising, put on weight and eventually developed diabetes. That resulted in poor circulation and the ulcers.’

‘My legs were also very swollen and very painful. I was having conventional treatment for about a year, but nothing much happened.’

‘When I tried these wraps, the leg swelling went down very quickly, and in about six months the ulcers had healed. It was quite remarkable. I wear them pretty much all the time now.’

Magnopulse: tel. 0117 9710 710 (office hours)