Becky Naughton's blog

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By Becky Naughton, RN, MSN, FNP-C, WCC

If you've ever had a painful red bump after shaving, you've probably chalked this up to razor burn or an ingrown hair. After an irritating day or so, the bumps will likely fade and disappear on their own, and you don't give it any more thought. But what if these bumps just kept growing and became more and more painful? And even worse, what if they developed in sensitive areas such as the axilla or the groin? What if these bumps got so bad, they eventually opened, started to drain, and even formed tracts under the skin? Not only are these bumps painful, but they are also embarrassing. Forget about wearing a sleeveless shirt or bathing suit in the summer. Would people think you had a horrific contagious disease? You go to doctor after doctor, but no one has been able to treat this successfully. The bumps may disappear for some time but then suddenly reappear. They may leave scars that seem to open and close persistently, and at times they may become infected, requiring antibiotic therapy. Finally, you get the diagnosis for this awful condition: hidradenitis suppurativa (HS).

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Calciphylaxis

By Becky Naughton, RN, MSN, FNP-C, WCC

Picture this: you've been seeing a patient in your wound center for the last several months to treat a slowly healing post-operative abdominal wound. The wound has been gradually responding to an assortment of treatments, including initial wound vacuum therapy after the surgery, followed by alginate and now a collagen dressing. The wound is getting smaller and has new granulation tissue at the base. You're actually a bit surprised that it's healing so nicely because the patient has multiple serious chronic illnesses, including severe chronic kidney disease that requires hemodialysis sessions three times per week, type 2 diabetes, morbid obesity, cardiovascular disease, and peripheral vascular disease.

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Weird Wounds

By Becky Naughton, RN, MSN, FNP-C, WCC

When I was in my APRN program, a phrase that I heard from an instructor has stuck with me throughout my practice: "When it comes to diagnosing, if you hear hooves, think horses, not zebras." Essentially, think of the obvious or likely reason first before jumping to a more obscure diagnosis. In the large majority of cases, the more common ailment is likely the cause. But what happens if the symptoms just don't quite add up?

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platelet-rich plasma

Becky Naughton, RN, MSN, FNP-C, WCC

What if I told you that there is a substance that we can isolate from your own blood that can help to heal the most difficult wound? I envision a scene out of "Star Trek" where Bones does a quick scan of his patient, draws some blood, runs it through some machines, and then out pops a seemingly magical elixir. He studies this new yellow substance and then injects it back into his patient (with a quick and seemingly painless puff from his high-tech injector gun).

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