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Autologous skin grafting is an important modality for wound coverage; however, it can result in donor site morbidity. Epidermal grafting is an emerging option to overcome this challenge. Furthermore, it can be done in an outpatient setting with minimal or no pain. To date, the evidence on the efficacy of this technique for wound healing has yet to be outlined. We aim to synthesise the current evidence on epidermal grafting for wound healing to establish the efficacy of this technique.
We will conduct a comprehensive search in the MEDLINE, EMBASE, and CENTRAL databases (up to May 2016) to identify studies on epidermal grafting for wound healing. We will include any primary studies (excluding case reports or case series lesser than three patients) or systematic reviews of such studies to assess the outcome of epidermal grafting for wound healing either on its own or compared to other methods. The expected primary outcome measures are the efficacy of epidermal grafting for wound healing (measured by the proportion of wounds healed at 6 weeks) and the mean wound-healing time (time for complete re-epithelialisation). Secondary outcome measures are the mean donor site-healing time, need for anaesthesia, costs associated with resource use, health-related quality of life, and proportion of patients with adverse event. Subgroup analysis will be performed for the proportions of wounds healed based on wound aetiology.
This is a timely systematic review, and the finding of this systematic review is expected to guide research and clinical practice aimed at improving wound care.
Systematic review registration