The Association of Scientific Medical Societies (AWMF) has for the first time published a guideline on the therapeutic use of cold atmospheric plasma, KAP for short. In it, the expert group recommends cold plasma therapy especially for wounds that are difficult to heal and contaminated with germs.
A new S2k guideline entitled “Rational therapeutic use of cold physical plasma” deals for the first time exclusively with the possible applications of cold plasma in practice and clinic. Experts from ear, nose and throat medicine, dermatology, surgery, ophthalmology and dentistry have agreed on joint recommendations. According to the preamble of the guideline, the potential of the new technology should thus be exploited and treatment errors avoided at the same time.
The guideline group attaches importance to three plasma effects for medical application:
- a broad spectrum of microorganisms including multi-resistant bacteria and viruses can be killed.
- injured tissue regenerates faster by stimulating cell growth, cell migration and formation of new blood vessels.
- regulated cell death is triggered – especially in cancer cells.
Main use in wounds:
The therapeutic use of cold plasma has become established, especially for wounds that have difficulty healing. A hand-held device produces the highly reactive, ionised gas mixture from breathing air. It is applied to the wound surface and can thus kill problem germs and stimulate wound healing processes without contact.
As a supplement to standard therapy according to guidelines, the experts therefore recommend cold plasma for the treatment of chronic and infected wounds with appropriate wound cleansing. Specialist therapy of possible concomitant diseases should always follow. They also suggest using KAP for the palliative treatment of open germ-infected tumour metastases in order to reduce both odour and pain.
According to the guideline, cold plasma therapy can be carried out not only by doctors but also by medical professionals with the appropriate additional qualifications. The recommendations are all based on a strong consensus.
German Society for Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery (DGMKG). Rational therapeutic use of cold physical plasma, version 1.0 of 23 February 2022, https://www.awmf.org/leitlinien/detail/ll/053-054.html (accessed 13.04.2022).