Maggot therapy - any experiences?

Discussion in 'I care for a person with dementia' started by CardiffGirlInEssex, Oct 18, 2019.

  1. CardiffGirlInEssex

    CardiffGirlInEssex Registered User

    Oct 6, 2018
    65
    My mum (still at the relatively early stage of AD) is in hospital with a really nasty haematoma on her lower leg. The skin has broken down, it is still bleeding but can't be surgically debrided because she has to continue her anticoagulant medication. Maggot therapy has been suggested, indeed could well be in progress by now. I've looked up info on the internet which is all very interesting, but I'm wondering if anyone on TP has experience of how it works and what comes afterwards?
     
  2. Grannie G

    Grannie G Volunteer Moderator

    Apr 3, 2006
    69,892
    Kent
    If it works and if I didn`t have to watch, I would agree @CardiffGirlInEssex

    I hope it works for your mother`s sake because it might save her pain and infection, but like you have only heard of it.

    Please post an update if your mother does have this Therapy. I`m sure it will be interesting to all of us to know.
     
  3. RosettaT

    RosettaT Registered User

    Sep 9, 2018
    301
    Female
    Mid Lincs
    I did see some time ago an item on the tv about this. I think they showed photos of the wound before the maggots were applied and again afterwards. The maggots eat the decaying flesh, debridement I think it's called, but leave the good flesh alone. I believe they use a certain type of maggot and call it larvae therapy.

    Sorry I'm a bit wishy washy but it's ages ago I saw it.
     
  4. Helly68

    Helly68 Registered User

    Mar 12, 2018
    484
    I have heard it spoken of. I had bad wound infections as a child and it was considered but I never had it.
    I think you can also get a kind of dressing which has a pump attached to draw out the grot, so to speak. Probably quite expensive. I saw someone using one in hospital and I think it worked for them.
     
  5. nitram

    nitram Registered User

    Apr 6, 2011
    19,277
    Male
    North Manchester
    I think the maggots, as well as uniquely feasting on the dead tissue, exude slime which helps with healing.
    Military surgeons treating infected wounds noticed that maggot infested wounds healed faster and would sometimes introduce maggots into wounds, if it worked it often prevented amputation of a limb.
    This practice continued during WW1, penicillin became available at the start of WW2 so it was discontinued.
    Breeding disinfected maggots for use on infected tissue could be a way of limiting use of antibiotics.
    Interesting 2009 NHS article
    https://www.nhs.uk/news/medical-practice/maggots-clean-ulcers-quickly/

    As an aside.
    My son in law had a post surgical wound that would not heal, it resisted all antibiotics, it was rapidly cured by makuna honey http://www.advancis.co.uk/products/activon-manuka-honey/actilite
     
  6. Donkeyshere

    Donkeyshere Registered User

    May 25, 2016
    317
    channel islands
    Hi My best friend is a nurse and has specialised in Maggot Therapy with great results. I dont know the ins and outs but I know they are laboratory grown maggots therefore germ free and hygenic and effectively "debride" the bad tissue. She will say that it is a very good old fashioned method that can be used effectively. She still gets called the Maggot Nurse even though she has moved on to a different specialism! I'm no expert but I have had heard via my friend that it is a good method.
     
  7. LynneMcV

    LynneMcV Volunteer Moderator

    May 9, 2012
    3,652
    south-east London
    Last year, an elderly friend of mine had a horrible deep wound to her shin area which just wasn't healing. In the end they tried maggot therapy and it cleaned up the wound beautifully. She is always showing us the before and after photos :D
     
  8. shaktibhakti

    shaktibhakti Registered User

    Sep 5, 2016
    13
    brighton
    Intreasting...I would try it or easier as suggested by somebody and used by "supervet" on TV Manuka honey.....get the best and high number grade to insure success though
     
  9. CardiffGirlInEssex

    CardiffGirlInEssex Registered User

    Oct 6, 2018
    65
    Thanks, useful to know that .
     
  10. CardiffGirlInEssex

    CardiffGirlInEssex Registered User

    Oct 6, 2018
    65
    Thank you, that's very encouraging. Not sure if they've been applied yet but if so, hopefully there will be a good result
     
  11. CardiffGirlInEssex

    CardiffGirlInEssex Registered User

    Oct 6, 2018
    65
    Thanks to everyone who has responded. I'll post an update next week when I've seen mum and know more.
     
  12. Palerider

    Palerider Registered User

    Aug 9, 2015
    969
    Male
    North West
    I've seen maggots used clinically and they do have very good results. The maggots are placed, then a dressing put over so you won't see them and left to do their work.
     
  13. Lawson58

    Lawson58 Registered User

    As an aside.
    My son in law had a post surgical wound that would not heal, it resisted all antibiotics, it was rapidly cured by makuna honey http://www.advancis.co.uk/products/activon-manuka-honey/actilite
    [/QUOTE]


    If you can get hold of it, lemon myrtle honey is even more effective than manuka honey. The lemon myrtle has an extremely high concentrate of citral which is the component of benefit in these products.

    It is a beautiful bush (grows to be a tree in the wild) and I have three growing in my garden. I use a couple of leaves in boiling water for a tea, strew a few over a leg of lamb before I put it in the oven, add it to cakes for flavours, anywhere you can use lemon. And it makes delicious honey.
     
  14. CardiffGirlInEssex

    CardiffGirlInEssex Registered User

    Oct 6, 2018
    65
    A brief update: the maggots have been applied and seem to be doing some good. Only problem now is that mum has decided she’s not getting out of bed before Monday, not sure why but it could well be that she’s objecting to the nurses’ way of speaking to her and basically acting like a stroppy teenager. I won’t be there until Tuesday, any ideas on how to approach this with her? She’s still quite early stage, I was thinking of perhaps saying that as it looks like she’s given up I should start looking for a care home for her, in the hope she will get moving just to prove me wrong.
    .
     
  15. CardiffGirlInEssex

    CardiffGirlInEssex Registered User

    Oct 6, 2018
    65
    Further update, I’ve seen mum today and the maggots seem to have done a good job. I have not seen the wound itself, but mum said it looked much better today when the bio bags were removed, all the dead stuff has gone. The leg is certainly much less swollen and though still covered with dressings from knee to ankle, it’s clearly a lot less uncomfortable for mum. So fingers crossed this will be a turning point and the skin can begin to regrow.
     

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