Wound Bed Preparation: Preparing the Body to Accept Advanced Wound Care

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Wound Bed Preparation: Preparing the Body to Accept Advanced Wound Care

You have a concerning foot, ankle, or leg wound that’s showing no signs of healing. In fact, it’s going in the opposite direction and there’s a danger that the infection will spread, turning that small wound or ulcer into a much larger problem.

To jump-start the healing, Dr. Thomas Rambacher, the skilled and experienced wound care specialist here at Foot Ankle Leg Wound Care Orange County first focuses on wound bed preparation, which sets the stage for a successful recovery. Let’s take a look.

Behind foot wounds that struggle to heal

Under normal circumstances, when you have an injury your body kicks off a four-phase wound healing process:

  1. Hemostasis — control and stop the bleeding
  2. Inflammatory — inflammatory cells start the call for healing resources
  3. Proliferation — new cells form
  4. Maturation — the tissue remodels itself

Acute injuries follow these stages and, in most cases, wounds heal in a timely manner (the exact timeline depends upon the extent of the damage).

With chronic wounds, this four-phase process stalls and doesn’t move forward because there aren't enough natural resources to combat the infectious agents. This typically occurs when blood flow is compromised in the area, which means oxygen and other healing resources can’t easily access the wound site.

This scenario is often found among people with diabetes who’ve developed peripheral neuropathy in their lower limbs. As a result of this nerve damage, about 1.6 million Americans develop diabetic foot ulcers each year, half of which become infected because there isn’t enough blood flow to the area.

Another road to slow-healing lower limb wounds is via peripheral artery disease (PAD), which affects 1 in 20 Americans over the age of 50. With PAD, circulation is compromised in your lower extremities, making healing more challenging in these areas.

Changing a chronic wound into an acute one

As foot wound specialists, our goal is to turn your chronic foot, ankle, or leg ulcer into an acute one that gets back on the four-phase healing track.

The first step toward this objective is through wound bed preparation, a process in which we lay the foundation for improved healing. This wound bed preparation might include:

  • Debriding the wound — removing infectious and necrotic (dead) tissue
  • Eliminating the high bacterial load in the wound through prescription wound care products and other techniques
  • Addressing hypoxia, which refers to the lack of oxygen reaching the wound
  • Getting rid of senescent cells, which are cells that no longer divide

By tackling these common obstacles associated with chronic wounds, our goal is to turn the tide and to get your wound into an acute mode in which the healing moves forward.

Once we prepare your wound, we can then move on to the next step of your treatment plan, which might include skin grafting or surgical wound care.

As you can see, wound bed preparation is a very important piece to the overall healing puzzle when it comes to lower limb wounds, and one to which we pay close attention.

If you have more questions about wound bed preparation or wound healing in general, we invite you to call our office in Mission Viejo, California, at 949-832-6018 or request an appointment online today.