From acute injuries that have just happened to chronic wounds that have developed, your doctor can manage the condition to prevent infection and further health complications.
Ensuring wound care management is controlled and monitored is crucial to prevent further complications.
Most of us know how to take care of superficial wounds such as cuts and scrapes. In doing so, we have witnessed the four phases of healing over a short period.
Those phases start with the wound closing by clotting, while an inflammatory response begins. The third stage involves rebuilding the wound with new tissue, followed by a final phase of maturation where the wound closes.
These stages of wound healing are a complex and fragile process yet are required for a wound to heal completely.
A chronic wound is one that fails to progress through these phases of healing in an orderly and timely manner. It can also be a wound that recurs or stalls, often in the inflammatory stage of wound healing.
The factors that may influence the development of a chronic wound are infection, diabetes, issues relating to metabolism in the elderly, or venous disease where blood has difficulty flowing smoothly through the veins and back to the heart.
All wounds should be treated with care, but for those with these types of underlying health conditions professional management of any wound should be sought sooner rather than later.
Management of wounds, chronic or otherwise, will most likely involve the practice nurse who will work together with your doctor. For more complex needs, wound management may involve a multidisciplinary team. For example if you have a foot ulcer related to diabetes, your GP may refer you to a podiatrist while overseeing complete management of your condition.
For any wound where seeping, redness or inflammation continues, seeking medical assistance should apply, especially for the young, old and immunocompromised.