About 8.2 million Americans have slow-healing wounds. A slow-healing wound is one that doesn’t start getting better on its own within a few weeks, and if it’s left untreated, it can lead to some serious health complications.
Slow-healing wounds often necessitate specialized wound care to prevent complications like infection and gangrene. But it’s not always easy to know if your wound is serious enough for professional wound care — and we’re here to help.
Our team at Medical Associates Of North Texas provides comprehensive wound care. We start with an exam of the wound site, then develop a treatment plan to protect your health and promote healing.
Wound debridement is the first step of many wound care plans, and it involves removing dead or infected tissue. You might need wound debridement and specialized wound care if:
You have a slow-healing wound
Having a slow-healing wound is the biggest indicator that you might need debridement and specialized wound care. But is your cut, injury, or sore considered a slow-healing wound?
All wounds heal at different paces, depending on their severity, location, and your overall health. However, wounds should always begin healing within about two weeks, and many wounds will be fully or almost healed within six weeks.
Signs that your wound is healing include blood clotting, scabbing, and scarring. Signs that it’s not healing are continued bleeding, discharge (like pus), and pain that doesn’t improve.
If you have a wound that doesn’t show signs of healing after several weeks, it may be considered a slow-healing wound.
You have a pre-existing health condition
A number of chronic health issues affect blood circulation and consequently, your body’s ability to heal itself. You may be at increased risk of slow-healing wounds and infection if you have:
- Nerve damage
- Peripheral artery disease
- Poor circulation
- Vascular disease
- Weakened immune system
Along with pre-existing health conditions, certain lifestyle factors can increase your risk of slow-healing wounds and related complications. These include:
- Excessive alcohol use
- Sedentary lifestyle
If you have these risk factors and develop a wound, it may be slow to heal and require careful monitoring.
You have signs of infection
Infection is a common, but dangerous, complication of slow healing wounds. Some signs of wound infection are:
- Bleeding, oozing, or pus
- Fever or chills
- Worsening pain
Learning to recognize the signs of infection can help you seek care when you need it, and debridement can help remove infected tissue so your body can start healing.
There are a few different types of wound debridement. Our team chooses the best method for you based on the age and size of your wound, as well as your overall health and your risk of complications.
We carefully examine your wound, debride it, and apply protective dressings. The dressings need to be changed frequently. Our team monitors your condition closely and gives you at-home care instructions too.
Are you concerned about a wound that doesn’t seem to be healing? Don’t wait to get it examined. Contact us at 972-433-7178 or send us a message to get started today.