Maggot -associated pain occurs in less than 30% of patients, and most often after 48 hours of therapy , when the maggots are satiated, finished working, and trying to escape. Thus, the pain is generally predictable and treatable. Those patients with pre-existing wound pain should be warned and given access to analgesics.
The maggots not only dissolve the dead skin with their digestive enzymes to debride the wound by also disinfect as they work . They do so in three ways: by consuming microbes that die in their gut, dissolving harmful microorganisms on the surface of the wound and secreting antimicrobial molecules into the affected area.
Maggot debridement therapy is as good as or better than conventional often surgical debridement , is more selective than surgical debridement , decreases time to healing and stay of patients in the ward, and may decrease the risk of major amputations.
Larvae therapy involves applying maggots to a wound to help it heal. Maggots can be used to treat dirty or infected wounds as they remove dead tissue and bacteria (germs), leaving behind healthy tissue that can heal. The maggots used in this treatment are specially bred and are sterile so they cannot cause infection.
There are now more than 1,000 therapists using maggot therapy in the United States, Sherman said. A treatment supply of medicinal maggots costs less than $100, but can save thousands or even tens of thousands of dollars in medical, surgical and hospital costs .
In the United States, 70 vials of medical grade maggots are distributed each week to wound care doctors, clinics and hospitals . The idea of putting maggots into open flesh may sound repulsive, but such a therapy might be a quick way to clean wounds, a new study from France suggests.
Maggots , otherwise known as fly larvae, are, of course, famous for eating the flesh of dead animals, and in this they perform a vital, if unglamorous, cleansing function in nature. But also – less often – maggots can infest and feed on the flesh of live animals and humans , a phenomenon known as myiasis.
The maggots that cause myiasis can live in the stomach and intestines as well as the mouth. This can cause serious tissue damage and requires medical attention. Myiasis is not contagious . Symptoms of myiasis in your gastrointestinal tract include stomach upset, vomiting, and diarrhea.
Maggot therapy. Your doctor puts maggots from fly larvae (specially bred in a lab so they’re sterile) on your wound, where they eat dead and infected tissue without hurting healthy tissue. They also help fight infection and speed healing by releasing chemicals that kill bacteria.
Pain and skin irritation are the most commonly reported side ef- fects. Caution is advised when exposed loops of bowel or blood vessels contain necrotic elements, as the larval secretions may dissolve the devitalized tissue, resulting in the development of an intestinal fistula or hemorrhage.
Maggot therapy is not only used on horses, but on small animals as well, with the same general purpose of debriding a wound. Maggot therapy is also used in human medicine, mostly for ulcers and non-healing traumatic or post-surgical wounds. The medical maggots are not as big in size as one might expect.
In this therapy live, sterile maggots of green bottle fly, Lucilia (Phaenicia) sericata are used, as they prefernecrotic tissues over healthy for feeding. Since centuries, MDT is used in humanbeings to treat chronic wounds .
Maggots are efficient consumers of dead tissue. They munch on rotting flesh, leaving healthy tissue practically unscathed. Physicians in Napoleon’s army used the larvae to clean wounds.
New research published in the October issue of Clinical Infectious Diseases has found that maggots are useful in treating deep wounds without increasing the risk of further infection. Maggots work because they eat dead tissue (debridement) within the wound , which can promote infection.
Some flies deposit their eggs on or near a wound or sore, the larvae that hatch burrow into the skin. Certain species’ larvae will move deeper in the body and cause severe damage.