Freaky Friday: Maggot Power!


At this time, our office continues to be open to new and existing patients. We use hospital-grade sanitizers and are taking measures to ensure patients maintain social distancing by not having anyone wait in our reception room with others. We are continuing operation in an effort to keep patients out of the urgent care clinics and hospital emergency departments, which increases the chances of being exposed to the virus. We have x-ray and ultrasound in the office to prevent you from having to go elsewhere.

For those patients who cannot or wish not to visit the office, we are offering private video telemedicine visits. Simply call the office at 713-785-7881 and ask for an e-visit and we will be happy to get you set up for an immediate appointment. You can also request an appointment through our website.

Scientifically engineered maggots can speed up healing for diabetic woundsNorth Carolina State University has come up with a faster way to heal diabetic wounds, but it sure ain’t pretty!

According to a recent study published in BMC Biotechnology journal, researchers scientifically engineered green bottle fly larvae (also known as Lucilia sericata) by exposing the larvae to heat while discharging a special protein called Platelet-derived growth factor subunit B (PDGF-BB).

After the ‘super maggots’ were engineered, they were placed on an open wound that failed to heal due to the patient’s diabetes. The enhanced maggots sterile excretions acted as a salve to the wound, preventing the infection from getting worse and even hastening the healing process!

While the thought of putting maggots on your feet is, admittedly, totally gross, you need to know that ulcers can be incredibly hard to heal once formed; you can’t afford to discount a viable treatment just because of an ickiness factor.

If the thought of maggots and festering wounds makes you squeamish, here’s my best advice: engage in daily diabetic foot care, so you never get to the point where these things are a medical must. Conduct daily home foot exams, looking for any nicks, scratches or red spots and report any abnormal findings to your doctor. An ounce of prevention should keep you far, far away from these highly effective—yet highly disgusting—wound healing super-maggots.

Dr. Andrew Schneider
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Dr. Andrew Schneider is a podiatrist and foot surgeon at Tanglewood Foot Specialists in Houston, TX.