Wound dressings: selecting the most appropriate type.
Appropriate wound dressing selection is guided by an understanding of wound dressing properties and an ability to match the level of drainage and depth of a wound. Wounds should be assessed for necrosis and infection, which need to be addressed prior to selecting an ideal dressing. Moisture-retentive dressings include films, hydrogels, hydrocolloids, foams, alginates, and hydrofibers and are useful in a variety of clinical settings. Antimicrobial-impregnated dressings can be useful in wounds that are superficially infected or are at higher risk for infection. For refractory wounds that need more growth stimulation, tissue-engineered dressings have become a viable option in the past few decades, especially those that have been approved for burns, venous ulcers, and diabetic ulcers. As wounds heal, the ideal dressing type may change, depending on the amount of exudate and depth of the wound; thus success in wound dressing selection hinges on recognition of the changing healing environment.
Broussard, KC; Powers, JG
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