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Maintenance of a moist wound healing environment is widely accepted as the ‘ideal’ environment for wounds to heal.
A delicate balance to keep the correct amount of fluid at the wound interface needs to be achieved.
This can be done by the use of modern dressing materials which either lock the exudate within the body of the dressing or allow the safe passage of exudate through the dressing by means of its MVTR (moisture vapour transmission rate).
At assessment the health care professional should observe for the clinical signs of infection: pain, heat, erythema, cellulitus, oedema, pyrexia, malodour, delayed healing, wound breakdown, fragile granulation tissue, excessive exudate and the presence of pus.
Patients who are immunocompromised cannot display these signs as they do not host a traditional immune response and therefore need to be monitored very closely and carefully.
Typical bacteria found in wounds include: staphylococcus aureus and pseudomonas aureginosa.
Wound fluid or ‘exudate’ in the right amount can bathe the wound with nutrients and actively cleanse the wound’s surface.The amount of exudate which is produced is individual to the wound however always tends to rise during the inflammatory phase and if infection is present.