All wounds start as acute but may worsen with time to become chronic. Chronic wounds are those that take longer than eight weeks to heal. A weak immune system could cause such injuries. Other causes of chronic wounds include diabetes, edema, limited mobility, and vascular diseases. Most of these wounds are painful; thus, those suffering need pain relief. Sometimes, they need psychological help, especially when the wounds become complex.
This involves cleaning the wound using a saline solution and dressing it with a clean bandage. However, the dressing should be repeated every one to two days for effective healing. Again, those with these wounds should keep the dressed area dry and clean to avoid further infection.
The dressing is used to cover wounds after cleaning them. They protect the wound from further infection and soak up with fluids coming out of the wound. However, wounds need to be dressed regularly to prevent the fluids from leaking out of the bandage.
Some dressings contain hormone-like substances that activate the growth of body cells and quicken wound healing. Sometimes, people opt for traditional options such as honey, especially those with venous leg ulcers. Some of the commonly used dressings include;
- Foam dressings
- Hydrogel dressings
- Dressings with silver or alginates
- Hydrocolloid dressings
Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy
This is a special chamber where patients with chronic wounds breathe in high-pressure oxygen. When more oxygen gets to the tissues, it improves blood supply in the tissues, and the wound heals. Dallas hyperbaric chamber has been used to take care of wounds of several patients, especially those with diabetic foot syndrome.
Sometimes, bacteria-infected wounds may take longer to heal if antibiotics aren’t recommended. An ointment is applied to the wound to hasten the healing process. This treatment is most effective for those suffering from diabetic foot syndrome. However, studies haven’t yet revealed whether antibiotic tablets can heal these wounds.
This treatment option is used on large wounds that require help to close. Patients with this type of chronic wound have skin taken from the thighs, abdomen, or back and transplanted on the wound. Skin grafts made from synthetic materials or human cell products aren’t as effective as skin taken from the body part. Studies have shown that skin graft heals wound faster compared to standard treatment.
This is removing the dead tissue from a wound using a curette, scalpel, or tweezers. The doctor then cleans the wound using enzyme-based gel or a high-pressure water jet. Sometimes, certain maggot species are placed on the wound to remove the inflamed tissue. However, patients must be numbed in the affected area or take painkillers because the process is painful.
Compression Stockings and Compression Bandages
This option is used in chronic wounds caused by poor blood circulation. Compression stockings and compression bandages press the infected area to help blood flow smoothly to and from the heart, improve overall blood circulation, and heal the chronic wound.
The above guideline explains different options used to heal chronic wounds. Though these options aren’t effective in all chronic wounds, a certain percentage of people recover from wounds using these methods.