Tuesday, October 12, 2004

.... Maggots ....

Speaking of the medical care system, let's turn to the bright side with a story about the march of progress...
New York hospitals are turning to a ghastly but highly effective medical tool to cure otherwise incurable infections — maggots.

In one recent case, a man's leg was saved from amputation when, as a last resort, doctors applied the creepy crawlies to his wound. The diabetic, in his late 50s, had arrived at Brookdale Hospital in Brooklyn with an open wound on his leg that was gangrenous because of poor circulation.

With peers suggesting amputation, Dr. Edward Golembe, director of the hospital's wound center, decided first to try maggots after learning the FDA had approved their use for medical purposes in January.

"The patient accepted it, but there was a little trepidation," he said. "It was clear to the patient that the alternative was more drastic."

The maggots were applied to the wound and were covered with a cage-like dressing to keep them in place.

Maggots only ingest dead tissue, leaving behind living matter with a precision that modern medicine cannot mimic. They quickly got to work, and after two days, the wound was clean and enough living tissue was left to save the leg...
Geeze. What next, leeches?
The medical use of leeches was also approved by the FDA earlier this year... (NY Post)
Ay, carumba!