Biosurgery is the reassuringly clinical name which has recently been used to refer to Maggot Debridement Therapy (MDT). It refers to the use of maggots to treat infected and non-healing wounds in humans.

For details of the history of the medical use of maggots, read Halcyon&on's concise and well-written account under maggot therapy. Details also appear under men, maggots and medics.

If you're looking for details of the actual methodology though, plus the location of some gory pictures of maggots being applied to a wound, you've come to the right place.


Method of application of maggots to wounds

The maggots used are Phaenicia sericata (green blow fly) larvae which have been hatched in sterile conditions. They are typically about 1/3 of and inch long, and very pale pink or white in color. They are used by packing hundreds of them directly into an open wound. They are then sealed in with layers of Duoderm, chiffon, and Kerlix wrap. This allows the maggots to breath and keeps them in the wound. The dressing and maggots are changed after a couple of days.


Pictures of maggot application to an open wound

Trust me, with captions such as, "Maggots on the wound" and "Removal of maggots", these photos are not for the squeamish. They show the application of maggots and dressings to an open wound on a very seriously inflamed and swollen foot. Very nasty. Go to http://medicaledu.com/maggots.htm if you dare.


Source :
The main source was Ronald A. Sherman's "Maggot Therapy Project" page at http://www.ucihs.uci.edu/path/sherman/home_pg.htm and it features a friendly maggot in a white coat.

Forget sea monkeys, I want maggots :
If you're in the US, go see Ronald A. Sherman at the URL above.
In the UK, try the Biosurgical Research Unit's page at http://www.smtl.co.uk/WMPRC/BioSurgery/Ordering/

SEE ALSO : perdedor's writeup under maggot for some more stomach-churning details

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