Growth factors in the treatment of diabetic foot ulcers

S P Bennett, G D Griffiths, A M Schor, G P Leese, S L Schor

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

    256 Citations (Scopus)


    BACKGROUND: Chronic foot ulceration is a major source of morbidity in diabetic patients. Despite traditional comprehensive wound management, including vascular reconstruction, there remains a cohort of patients with non-responding wounds, often resulting in amputation. These wounds may benefit from molecular manipulation of growth factors to enhance the microcirculation.

    METHODS: A review of the current literature was performed using Pubmed, with secondary references obtained from key articles.

    RESULTS AND CONCLUSION: There has been a generally disappointing clinical outcome from growth factor trials, although topical platelet-derived growth factor has shown significant benefit and should be considered in non-healing, well perfused ulcers after failure of conventional wound care. The modulatory role of the extracellular matrix in the cellular response to growth factors and data from regenerative-type fetal wound healing are further areas of interest. The chemical induction of microvessel formation may become a future therapeutic option.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)133-46
    Number of pages14
    JournalThe British journal of surgery
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - Feb 2003


    • Diabetic Foot/drug therapy
    • Endothelial Growth Factors/therapeutic use
    • Epidermal Growth Factor/therapeutic use
    • Fibroblast Growth Factor 7
    • Fibroblast Growth Factors/therapeutic use
    • Granulocyte Colony-Stimulating Factor/therapeutic use
    • Growth Substances/therapeutic use
    • Humans
    • Intercellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins/therapeutic use
    • Lymphokines/therapeutic use
    • Platelet-Derived Growth Factor
    • Risk Factors
    • Transforming Growth Factor beta/therapeutic use
    • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor A
    • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factors
    • Wound Healing/drug effects


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