By Rosie Wilson

Medical tech company Smith & Nephew has announced the conclusion of the 6th International Negative Pressure Wound Therapy (NPWT) Expert Meeting, at which 300 international experts convened in Berlin on 20-21st March.

35 international experts spoke on the issue of surgical site complications and shared evidence on the outcomes of using PICO, a canister-free NPWT system that reduces closed incision complications in high risk patients.

Complications with incisions can double the cost of the surgery for the patient, and can cause fatalities in extreme cases. NPWT helps to prevent wound complications by stimulating blood flow in the peri-incisional area.

Mr. Michael Sugrue, Consultant Breast and General Surgeon at Letterkenny General Hospital, Eire, said:

“The global burden of infection is severe, and the impact of NPWT is enormous in terms of reducing cost and morbidity, so we are seeing progress. We’ve opened our minds to the future, and shown negative pressure has a place in it.”

And Mr. Richard Ingemansson, Senior Consultant in Cardiothoracic Surgery at the University of Lund, Sweden, said:

“The potential for wound complications in many areas of surgery is great. We need to cut infection rates where they tend to be high, and look further into the risk factors involved, so we can identify patients who could benefit the most.”