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Trial for wound healing device

16 December 2021

A partnership between Huntleigh Heathcare Ltd, Cardiff University’s Clinical Innovation Accelerator (CIA) and Welsh Wound Innovation Centre (WWIC) is to evaluate a new wound healing device.

The randomised control trial, supported by Accelerate Wales, will determine the device’s impact on chronic non-healing wounds, specifically venous leg ulcers.

Huntleigh Healthcare has developed an innovative intermittent pneumatic compression (IPC) device (WoundExpress™) which applies compression to the thigh of the afflicted leg (proximal compression), away from the actual leg ulcer sites which are situated below the knee.

Smaller pilot studies have shown the utility of the device in conjunction with standard wound care.

Jane Davies, Principal Clinical Support Manager, Huntleigh Healthcare said: “As a company, we very much value the opportunity to collaborate with our esteemed colleagues at Accelerate, Cardiff University and WWIC. Their combined expertise and assistance is invaluable as we work together on this important research project with the aim of improving the lives of those who suffer from lower leg ulceration.”

The increasing frequency of chronic wounds is recognised as a growing healthcare issue globally as the prevalence of non-healing wounds is increasing due to an aging population and a rise in the incidence of diabetes and obesity.

Professor Keith Harding, Medical Director of the Welsh Wound Innovation Centre, said the trial offered the prospect of enabling patients to heal their wounds faster with much less pain and discomfort.

“It is a project that has strong Welsh roots. The Huntleigh team, who make the device and own the Intellectual Property associated with WoundExpress,™ is based in Cardiff and the clinical team from the Welsh Wound Innovation Centre are based in Llantrisant.

“The academic partners are based at Cardiff University, and we now have centres recruiting patients to the clinical study from multiple European countries.

“It a great example of how the Accelerate programme can undertake challenging and potentially game changing work in an important aspect of clinical care.”

The estimated cost of wound treatment per annum for chronic wounds in the UK is £2-3 billion (3-5% of the NHS spend). The NHS manages an estimated 278,000 venous leg ulcers (VLUs) every year, of which 47% (130,660), do not heal within 12 months.

The large-scale randomised Control Trial (RCT) will operate across 4 countries with up to 10 sites across UK and Europe to assess the clinical evidence in support of the WoundExpress™ device.

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