Background: Negative-pressure wound therapy (NPWT) and its variations are an established adjunctive modality for the treatment of wounds. Since its introduction, there have been an increasing number of publications with periods of rapid increases in the number of publications after innovations to the technology. Its application in different wound types and varying clinical scenarios has also contributed to the growing number of publications. Methods: A comprehensive literature review (1998-2016) was performed using key words most relevant to NPWT using PubMed/Medline and OVID. Eligibility criteria included higher level evidence studies. Results: One thousand three hundred and forty-seven publications were identifed. A total of 26 publications are included in this review: 16 comparing NPWT with standard wound dressing, 6 comparing variations of NPWT, and 4 for NPWT with instillation. The level of evidence, wound type studied, reported outcomes and impact, and key fndings are tabulated and discussed. Conclusions: The number of publications has grown signifcantly since the inception of NPWT. In part, this reflects the variations of NPWT that have developed. However, a greater number of robust, randomized, prospective studies are needed to support its wide spread use.
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