Collagen is the most abundant protein in the human body. It is regarded as the substance that holds the whole body together and can be found in the bones, muscles, skin and tendons.1,2
- Collagen naturally plays an important role within the body, but it is being used increasingly within certain areas of medicine as well. The breakdown of the body’s natural collagen can lead to a number of health problems, but the protein can also be used in other contexts to help with the repair of the body.
Due to its functional diversity, the fact that it is resorbable and occurs naturally, collagen has several different medical uses and can be utilized with a variety of medical devices.
- Skin fillers: Injections of collagen can improve the contours of the skin and fill out depressions. Collagen can be used cosmetically to remove various lines and wrinkles from the face, as well as scarring (including acne), so long as the scars do not have a sharp edge.
- Wound dressing: Within wound healing, collagen attracts new skin cells to the wound site, promotes healing and provides a platform for the growth of new tissue. Collagen dressings are therefore used in order to aid the healing of certain types of wound, including:
- Chronic non-healing wounds
- Exuding wounds
- Granulating or necrotic wounds
- Partial and full-thickness wounds
- Second-degree burns
- Sites of skin donation and skin grafts
- Guided tissue regeneration: Collagen-based membranes have been used in periodontal and implant therapy to promote the growth of specific types of cell. In oral surgery, barriers can be used to prevent fast-growing cells of the gingival epithelium migrating to a wound in a tooth, preserving space there for tooth cells to potentially regenerate. The benefit of using collagen-based membranes for this purpose, in addition to collagen’s healing qualities, is that they can be made to be resorbable, and thus patients do not require a second surgical procedure to have the barrier removed.
- Vascular prosthetics: Collagen tissue grafts from donors have been used in peripheral nerve regeneration and vascular prostheses, used in arterial reconstruction. Certain prostheses have been found to be thrombogenic – causing coagulation of the blood – but at the same time, compatible with the body of the host.
- Treatment of osteoarthritis: Collagen supplements or formulations may be beneficial in the treatment of osteoarthritis. In a number of trials, they have been found to provide some degree of pain reduction. However, in other trials, use of collagen supplements and formulations has not been found to result in any additional benefit.
Source: MNT, www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/262881.php