Wound Care — Debridement

A certified nurse practitioner, Seana Rutherford cares for people at Premier Physicians in Fairview Park, Ohio. Wound care, including debridement, is among the variety of healthcare services provided by Seana Rutherford.

When patients with wounds go to a doctor or emergency room, one of the first orders of business may be to properly clean the wound prior to bandaging or stitching. Sometimes, however, parts of the wounded tissue can die.

Wounds burdened with dead tissue are more likely to heal slowly. Dead tissue also harbors bacteria, which risks future infections that can escalate into serious problems, such as gangrene. Healthcare professionals tasked with cleaning wounds remove dead tissue in a process called debridement.

Healthcare providers have several different techniques for debridement to suit individual cases. Surgical debridement, for example, is performed by doctors who excise dead tissue with scalpels. Chemical debridement involves the introduction of enzymes into the wound that eat away the dead tissue.