Aspirin inhibits chronic wound healing, providers should dispense it with caution, researchers warn

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Long-term care professionals might want to opt for non-aspirin pain relievers for residents with chronic wounds, as researchers have discovered that aspirin appears to suppress healing.

Investigators affiliated with various universities in Japan conducted experiments on diabetic mice with wounds. In one, they discovered that high-dose aspirin reduces the production of a molecule called 12-HHT, which promotes skin healing by spurring the movement of keratinocytes. The migration of keratinocyte skin cells across the wound is an important part of restoring the outermost layer of skin.

"This study describes a novel mechanism for aspirin's effect in delaying wound healing and suggests that aspirin should be used with caution in patients with chronic wounds," said lead author Takehiko Yokomizo, M.D., Ph.D., of Kyushu University.

In another experiment, the researchers discovered that introducing a “synthetic mimic” of BLT2 — the receptor for 12-HHT — accelerated healing in the mice. This suggests a potential proactive therapy to treat stubborn wounds, they noted.

Findings appear in the Journal of Experimental Medicine.

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