Laser resurfacing techniques have become a popular means of achieving rejuvenation of damaged skin. Interest is great in attempting to speed re-epithelialization and healing so that patients can return to their normal activities as quickly as possible. Previous studies have demonstrated that wounds heal more quickly when they are covered and kept moist than when they are left open to the air. Until now, no study has been conducted to investigate whether the healing process of a superficial skin burn might be accelerated by the use of an autologous platelet gel as a biologic dressing. Our study of five pigs showed that autologous platelet gel can influence wound healing by stimulating an intense inflammatory process that leads to highly significant increases in the production of extracellular matrices and granulation tissue. The platelet gel accelerated vascular ingrowth, increased fibroblastic proliferation, and accelerated collagen production. However, the gel did not appear to accelerate re-epithelialization. The aggressive production of granulation tissue and the acceleration of collagen production might mean that autologous platelet gel will have a future role in the treatment of burns because the highly vascularized bed it helps create should promote the success of skin grafting in patients with deep partial-thickness and full-thickness burns.
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