Surgical site management in the post-operative time frame is paramount in preventing infection and wound dehiscence. It is essential to use practical knowledge in good wound cleansing and skin care and in providing moisture balance in surgical site wound care management.
By Kathi Thimsen RN, MSN, WOCN
In follow up to comments and additional considerations of products, ingredients, and clinical practice, it is important to discuss several aspects of the topic. This blog has served thus far as a primer for the evolution of products both on the market today and currently under development.
Products are complex formulations, requiring a great deal of research and testing. Ingredients are components that, when used in concert with others, create a desired function and benefit to the user. Some ingredients in a product must be used to provide ease of application, while others are used for therapeutic effects or to maintain product safety.
The subject of product ingredients is important to practitioners. Each time you write an order or recommendation, you are indicating that you have assessed your patient, considered their general state of health and metabolism, done a comprehensive wound assessment, and checked for allergies and sensitivities. After assessing these factors, your product recommendation, based on the most effective and therapeutic products available, will become an important part of the protocol you set forth for the patient.
In instances where the patient’s treatment yields no improvement over a two-week period, one must question the benefit and efficacy of that individual’s protocol. Consider two points: the first addresses the situation of therapeutic interventions and goal of treatment. If a patient was given an anti-hypertensive medication, and after two weeks had no change in blood pressure, certainly the medication’s efficacy would be in question. A change in medication or titration would be deemed appropriate. With this in mind, should considering a change in wound treatment strategy be managed differently?
The second point is related to a question that has yet to be addressed in the wound healing industry (as I last queried the literature). Do genetics and predisposing factors that impact efficacy apply to wound management strategies as they do in medication prescribing? In thinking about patients that had similar characteristics and presenting symptomatology with their wound, why did they not respond as product literature and past experiences would indicate? Often, clinical discussions about this type of problematic healing resulted in conclusions of “well, that patient has poor healing potential” or “that patient is unfortunate and has problematic, unavoidable issues of wounding and healing.”
The second point has not yet been answered in wound care. I challenge you to consider, review, and give thought to contributing to the body of research that needs to be carried out to explore this interesting topic.
So, continue on the path of looking into the bottle, jar, and package when designing a therapeutic wound management plan for your patients. It is then a win-win for both you and your patient! Happy holidays!
About The Author
Kathi Thimsen RN, MSN, WOCN is a leader in the field of wound and ostomy care, publishing articles, presenting at conferences nationally and internationally, and serving on numerous committees and education boards including the International Association of Forensic Nurses Ethic Committee
The views and opinions expressed in this blog are solely those of the author, and do not represent the views of WoundSource, Kestrel Health Information, Inc., its affiliates, or subsidiary companies.
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