Use of the MolecuLight i:XTM Helped Avoid Costs (£3500) of a Possible Failed Graft Procedure


“I was ready to perform skin graft surgery on this patient. The wound looked clean and appeared to be a good candidate for skin grafting. The MolecuLight i:X completely changed my decision making and resulted in not only time and cost savings but also an improved patient outcome.”
- Lt Col Steven Jeffery, RAMC


Patient Condition:
47-year-old male required an above knee amputation following a traumatic burn injury. Patient reported severe pain and developed an abscess ~6 weeks post-amputation.

Clinical Synopsis:
Patient required a right above knee amputation after severe burns. The stump later became infected, therefore was evacuated, washed out and left open with a plan for subsequent delayed closure.

One week later, clinical assessment suggested the wound was granulating well and had no current contraindications for grafting (e.g. bacterial contamination). The patient was deemed ready for operating theatre for limb closure with a graft.

However, MolecuLight i:X fluorescence images taken prior to theatre revealed bacterial burden in the lower edge of the wound. Probing of this area revealed the presence of pus, which was later confirmed to be E. coli and P. mirabilis. Based on this information, the clinician decided to delay the skin graft operation, which would not have been successful if pursued.1,2

Figure 1: Standard Imaging ModeTM Wound before limb closure.
Figure 1: Standard Imaging ModeTM
Wound before limb closure.
Figure 2: Fluorescence Imaging ModeTM Presence of bacteria indicated by red color.
Figure 2: Fluorescence Imaging ModeTM
Presence of bacteria indicated by red color.
Figure 3: Standard Imaging ModeTM Pus drained from wound.
Figure 3: Standard Imaging ModeTM
Pus drained from wound.
Figure 4: Fluorescence Imaging ModeTM Red fluorescing pus. Presence of bacteria indicated by red color.
Figure 4: Fluorescence Imaging ModeTM
Red fluorescing pus. Presence of bacteria indicated by red color.

Potential Cost Savings (estimated in £)1

Operating Theatre and Staff (1 Hour) £15002
Five Day Hospital Stay £400/day = £2000
Total Estimated Cost Savings £3500


In this particular patient, MolecuLight i:X images prevented an unnecessary surgery and saved the hospital approximately £3500 (€4000 Euro/$5300 CAD). This figure does not include the additional healthcare costs of treating a failed infected skin graft, which would almost certainly have developed in this stump had a graft been performed.

References:
Images provided by Lt Col Steven Jeffery, The Royal Centre for Defence Medicine, Birmingham, UK
MolecuLight Clinical Case 0014B

  1. Communication with Lt Col Steven Jeffery.
  2. Ang WW et al. The cost of trauma operating theatre inefficiency. Ann Med Surg (London). 2016 May; 7: 24–29.