I am sorry, I just don't think I could do it!
LONDON (Reuters) - British doctors will be able to prescribe maggots to NHS patients with infected wounds from Friday onwards, a hospital official said.
He said the National Health Service had realized maggots were a cheaper and more beneficial way of treating wounds than using conventional medicine.
Patients would be able to treat themselves at home and avoid the possibility of picking up a hospital infection.
Maggots have been used for centuries to rid wounds of decaying flesh, but after the discovery of antibiotics their use went into decline.
"People didn't like the thought of creepy-crawlies on their skin," said Tony Fowler, customer services manager at the Princess of Wales Hospital in Bridgend, Wales.
"But now there is a renewed interest because of the problems caused by the over-use of antibiotics, and the NHS has seen the cost-effectiveness of maggots."
Research at the Princess of Wales Hospital confirmed that placing sterile maggots on wounds could make them heal faster than conventional medicine.
The creatures devour dead, infected tissue and kill off bacteria that could block the healing process without damaging the surrounding tissue, since they cannot ingest healthy flesh.
Previously, patients could obtain sterile maggots from certain hospitals and research centers.