6.5 million Americans are suffering from chronic wounds. Also known as the silent epidemic, chronic wounds are slowly taking a toll on the health of the people and are also becoming a burden to the country’s economy, as evidenced by more than $25 billion spent annually on the treatment of chronic wounds in the United States alone.
But more than the numbers, the patient suffering from a non-healing wound takes the most blows because of how it can affect their quality of life, especially without proper chronic wound care. This is why it’s very important to learn about these five steps to better care and management of non-healing wounds:
Cleaning and Debridement
When a wound hasn’t shown any signs of healing for more than eight weeks, it is classified as a chronic wound. And when that happens, it’s very important to know the first and probably most important part of chronic wound care, cleaning, and debridement.
Generally, a wound is cleaned using saline solution but your wound care specialist may recommend other solutions depending on the condition of your wound and its healing process. Debridement is usually done to remove inflamed or dead tissue that affects the wound’s healing.
Since this process may be painful, you might need to apply a local anesthetic to numb the affected part. To ensure that you’re doing the right steps in cleaning and debridement, make sure to consult with your wound care specialist first.
Compression Stockings or Bandages
There are instances when a non-healing wound is caused by poor blood circulation, especially if the affected part is located in the lower extremities. This is when wearing a compression stocking or bandage becomes part of chronic wound care because it aids the veins in carrying blood back to the heart, which in turn promotes better circulation.
Physical Therapy Wound Care
If you are suffering from a non-healing wound that is caused by trauma, surgery, pressure or underlying conditions like diabetes, your wound care specialist might recommend physical therapy wound care.
The process begins with a comprehensive evaluation of your wound where basic chronic wound care like cleaning, debridement, and dressing are done. Depending on the state of your wound, the specialist may also require treatment modalities like compression therapy, ultrasound mist therapy, and pulsed lavage to aid healing.
According to studies, 61 out of 100 patients who had skin graft experienced complete wound healing within six months after the procedure. This is why some wound care specialists would recommend a skin graft as a treatment option, especially for wounds that are so big that it’s impossible for them to close on their own.
More than the discomfort of having a chronic wound, it’s the pain that takes the most toll in the life of patients who have it. This is when it really matters to seek medical help so proper pain management can be implemented. From medications to wound dressings, you now have several options to be free from pain even if you have a non-healing wound.
At the end of the day, it’s all about finding the right healthcare practitioner to help you with the management of your non-healing wound, so you can still enjoy a good quality of life.
We specialize in diagnosis and treatment for any and all wound care issues for patients in San Diego County, Orange County, and Riverside County. For more information or to set an appointment, please contact us.