Research funding brings comfort to burns patients

Woman in scrubs demonstrates treatment on a man's hand using laser equipment
Fiona Wood demonstrates laser treatment with burns patient Adrian
August 23, 2017

A project led by Professor Fiona Wood at Fiona Stanley Hospital to seek new insights into the impact of laser treatment on burns scars for patients, will share in $6 million of State Government funding from the Medical and Health Research Infrastructure Fund (MHRIF).

In particular, the study will examine the optimal timing of initial treatment post-injury, and the ideal interval between treatments.

Professor Wood’s team will use the grant to run the laboratory where the scar samples will be analysed.

“Scarring after a burn can affect ease of movement with stiffness and cause itchiness in hot weather – so it can be quite uncomfortable,” Professor Wood said.

“Through this project we want to get a deeper understanding of how scars change over time at a cellular level and from there, we can work to improve health outcomes for these patients.

“We are incredibly grateful for the funding we have received, which will help keep us moving forward with this vital research.”

Laser therapy has revolutionised the treatment of burns in recent years with the aim of reducing the time patients spend in pressure garments, and their need for reconstructive surgery, while improving the physical and psychological impact of burn injury.

Professor Wood is one of 139 high-performing researchers awarded funding in the 20th round of the MHRIF program, which provides grants to help researchers meet the day-to-day infrastructure costs associated with their projects.

Read the Minister for Health’s announcement about the latest round of funding.