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Steroid fails as cure for high-stage pressure ulcers

May 22, 2013
by Pamela Tabar, Editor-in-Chief
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Anabolic steroids seem to provide little or no help in the healing of target pressure ulcers (TPUs), according to one study published in the May 20 online issue of Annals of Internal Medicine.

The study revealed that oxandrolone, an anabolic steriod, had no greater effect on the healing process of stage III or IV TPUs than a placebo. Nearly 3,000 clinical trial participants, all of whom had spinal cord injuries, were monitored for TPU improvement, including the ability of the wound to heal and remain closed after eight weeks.

However, the study authors agree more research is needed on the possible effects of steroids on TPU healing. Approximately one-third of participants didn’t complete the study, and the researchers’ selection of only high-stage wounds may have masked subtle effects in the drug’s effectiveness, the authors wrote.

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