negative-pressure wound therapy, wound care, medical device reports, wound management



  1. Kaufman-Rivi, Diana MPH
  2. Hazlett, Antoinette C. MSN
  3. Hardy, Mary Anne MPH
  4. Smith, Jacquelyn M. MA
  5. Seid, Heather B. MA


OBJECTIVE: MedWatch, the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA's) nationwide adverse event reporting system, serves to monitor device performance after a medical device is approved or cleared for market. Through the MedWatch adverse event reporting system, the FDA receives Medical Device Reports of deaths and serious injuries with negative-pressure wound therapy (NPWT) systems, many of which are used in homes and in extended-care facilities. In response to reported events, this study was conducted to obtain additional information about device issues that healthcare professionals face in these settings, as well as challenges that caregivers might encounter using this technology at home. The study was exploratory and descriptive in nature.


PARTICIPANTS: The FDA surveyed wound care specialists and professional home healthcare providers to learn about users' experiences with NPWT.


DESIGN: In the first phase of the study, a semistructured questionnaire was developed for telephone interviews and self-administration. In the second phase, a web-based survey was adapted from the semistructured instrument.


RESULTS: Respondent concerns primarily centered on issues not directly related to the NPWT devices: NPWT prescription, provider education in addition to patient training and appropriate wound management practices, notably ongoing wound assessment, and patient monitoring.


CONCLUSION: Overall, respondents thought that there was a definite benefit to NPWT, regardless of the care setting, and that it was a safe therapy when prescribed and administered appropriately.