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Wound Chronicity

by the WoundSource Editors

Chronic wounds affect over 6.5 million people annually in the United States, with a total cost of over $26.8 billion per year. Proper identification of chronic wounds is necessary to develop an effective treatment plan, although many elements—such as intrinsic and extrinsic factors, comorbidities, and mixed etiologies—may complicate this process.

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Pressure Injury

by the WoundSource Editors

Wound healing is a complex process that is highly dependent on many skin cell types interacting in a defined order. With chronic wounds, this process is disrupted, and healing does not normally progress. Although there are different types of chronic wounds, those occurring from injury, such as skin tears or pressure injuries, are some of the most common. These injuries are a result of repeated mechanical irritation. Moisture-associated skin damage is another condition that can contribute to chronicity. Understanding the causes and contributors to these injuries can help to minimize patients’ risk of developing them. It can also aid in the formation of an optimal treatment plan for when injuries do occur, which reduces the healing time and leads to better patient outcomes.

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Biofilm Management

by the WoundSource Editors

The returning wound patient is in for reassessment. They are positioned for maximum visualization of the wound. You remove the dressing. Clean the wound. After a few additional steps, it's time to measure the wound's progress. Using your measurement tool, you take careful note of the wound’s measurements. In comparing the measurement with the previous visits, you realize that the wound has stalled out.

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Chronic Wounds

by the WoundSource Editors

In approaching the management of a chronic wound, the first step in developing a treatment plan that will combat chronicity and promote healthy healing of damaged tissue begins with understanding the different types of wounds.

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by the WoundSource Editors

Epidermis: the outer layer of the skin, which is the protective layer against the outside elements.

Epithelialization: the growth of the epidermis over a wound during the remodeling stage.

Granulation: condition occurring in a full-thickness wound where the growth of small vessels and connective tissue forms “scaffolding” as the wound rebuilds.

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Keywords: 

by the WoundSource Editors

There has been extensive research on how to prevent skin care-related skin breakdown, and most research agrees on a few main components. Eliminating skin contact with sweat, urine, and stool reduces the risk of maceration and incontinence-associated dermatitis and thereby helps to prevent or minimize skin breakdown. Proper mattress selection and offloading devices are important for minimizing the impact of weight on bony prominences. Nutritional therapy is also a key component of maintaining skin integrity. This is because this therapy supplies nutrients that the body requires, as well as hydration. Turning, repositioning, and avoiding the impact of shear force when adjusting the patient are important to eliminate mechanical forces that can break down the tissue. Most importantly, having a consistent method to assess skin integrity and using a validated scale such as the Braden Scale for Predicting Pressure Sore Risk® (Braden Scale) are the most effective methods of tracking changes and implementing the necessary interventions based on the area or areas of deficiency.

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by the WoundSource Editors

Those working with at-risk populations must be aware of how to address the skin care needs of our patients and prevent pressure ulcers and injuries. At-risk populations, such as older adults, persons who are incontinent, pediatric patients, immobile patients, post-operative patients, and those with chronic disease processes and spinal injuries, for example, are most at risk for developing pressure ulcers. Those patients who have comorbidities such as obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease are at additional risk.

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by the WoundSource Editors

Periwound skin management is just as important as wound bed preparation in wound healing. The goal of periwound management is to maintain an optimal moist wound healing environment while preventing skin breakdown and infection. Skin is more vulnerable in patients with certain comorbidities and conditions. Periwound skin breakdown is just one of the culprits that delay wound healing and increase pain. It is important to identify conditions and risk factors early in your wound assessment to help prevent any risk of wound progress declination.

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by the WoundSource Editors

The skin is the largest organ of our body, covering 18 square feet and weighing approximately 12 pounds. Despite positive characteristics, the skin is always susceptible to and at risk of injury and breakdown. Maintaining skin integrity equals maintaining skin health, and this includes people of any age. Older adults are at a higher risk because of the skin aging process. As skin ages, the junction between the epidermis and dermis thins and flattens, reducing circulation. Moisturizing factors in older adults also reduce, thus causing dry, flaky skin and increased risk of skin breakdown.

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Venous Leg Ulcer Management Strategies

by the WoundSource Editors

Venous leg ulcers can be painful, cause distress, and affect quality of life, from the weekly wound center visits, multilayer wraps, debridements, compression hose, elevation of legs above the heart, to the odor from heavy exudate.

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