NEWS | Wound Care
The Treatment Expert
Inexpensive dressings work
Donna Sardina, RN,
President, Wound Care
ﬁne on ulcers, study asserts
By John O’Connor healing by 12 weeks; compared
At a time when manufacturers to 58 days and 56.7% for the
What is wound exudate? are racing to develop newer control group. By six months,
Most frequently referred to as wound and what sometimes turn out 85% of the silver dressing group
“drainage,” exudate is a liquid produced to be more expensive wound and 77% of the control group
by the body in response to tissue dam- care treatments, a new study had a healed ulcer; and by the
age. It bathes the wound continuously, finds that cheaper options one-year mark, the ﬁgures were
keeping it moist, supplying nutrients, might work just as well. 96% for both groups. Venous
and providing the best conditions for An investigation pub- Less expensive dressings might ulcers are relatively common
migration of new tissue to heal the lished in the October issue work just as effectively on leg among nursing residents.
wounds, a new study ﬁnds.
wound. Open wounds should be moist, of the British Journal of Sur- “Our study clearly shows that
but not overly moist. A healthy healing gery concludes that England there is no evidence to justify the
wound should be moist without measur- could reduce healthcare costs There were no significant use of the more expensive silver
able exudate. by millions of dollars by using differences between the two dressings in routine venous leg
inexpensive dressings to treat groups when it came to healing ulcer care, as they offer no real
Exudate terminology venous leg ulcers. rates and quality of life, but the clinical advantage or improve-
• Serous—thin clear watery plasma Researchers studied 213 leg silver dressings were signifi- ment in quality of life, but are
(seen in partial thickness wounds/ ulcer patients who received cantly more expensive. signiﬁcantly more expensive,”
venous ulcerations). A moderate to either standard low-adhesive Median healing time for the said lead researcher Professor
heavy amount may indicate heavy bacte- dressings or antimicrobial group treated with silver dress- Jonathan Michaels from the
ria level. This is normal in the ﬁrst phases silver-donating dressings. ings was 67 days, with 59.6% Shefﬁeld Vascular Institute. ■
of wound healing.
• Sanguinous—bloody (fresh bleeding).
This indicates new blood vessel growth
or disruption of blood vessels.