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Flashcards in Wound healing complications Deck (77):
1

Outline some general complications of wound healing

Haemorrhage and haematoma
Swelling and oedema
Seroma
Dehisence
Infection - tissue necrosis
Scarring and contracture
Draining tracts
Exposed bone
Non-healing wounds

2

What are the different types of wound? 5

Elective incisional
Elective excisional
Traumatic complications
Acute
Chronic

3

What are Halsted's Principles of Surgery?

H - haemostasis
A - aseptic technique
L - light touch (atraumatic surgery)
S - supply of blood preserved
T - tension free closure
E - even tissue apposition
D - dead space obliteration

4

What are Esmarch's principles of wound management? 5

Non-introduction of anything harmful
Tissue rest
Wound drainage
Avoidance of venous stasis
Cleanliness

5

When can haemorrhage and haematoma occur?

Post-operatively:
Primary
Delayed primary
Secondary

6

What effect does a haematoma have on wound healing? 7

physical separation of wound edges
pressure on wound edges (necrosis and dehisence)
prevention of adherence of grafts and flaps
physical barrier to leukocyte migration
growth medium for bacteria
pain
organisation of haematoma may cause a deformity

7

How do you manage haemorrhage?

Pressure - light bandage, 12 hours
Restrict movement
Investigate coagulopathy
Supportive (fluids +/- blood products)

8

How do you manage haematoma?

none
aspirate - but infection risk
warm compress

9

What are DDx for swelling and oedema? 2

infection and cellulitis

10

What therapy is appropriate for swelling and oedema?

massage, support dressing, remove constricting structures

11

What is an axial pattern flap?

a myocutaneous flap containing an artery in its long axis

12

Define seroma

a collection of serum and tissue fluid in dead space

13

What are the effects of a seroma?

tissue separation
skin flaps
skin grafts
tension on incision lines
interference with blood supply
interferes with WBC migration

14

What are DDx for seroma? 3

haematoma, oedema, abscess, wound dehisence and herniation

15

What is best treatment for seroma?

Most resolve but prevention better than cure - no sepcific therapy.
CONSERVATIVE: aspirate, control dead space, control movemement, drainage (avoid suction), remove sutures
SURGICAL INTERVENTION: dehisence, secondary infection

16

What contributing factors may lead to seroma? 7

inflammation
lymphatic injury
poor haemostasis
traumatic surgery
implants
movement
dead space

17

What are reasons for dehisence?

primary healing defect
surgical technique, judgement, wound bed, trauma

18

When is dehisence usually seen? Exception?

3-5 days after surgery (unless self-trauma)

19

What are signs of dehisence?

serosanguinous discharge
swelling
necrosis, buising, discharge

20

What is appropriate therapy for dehisence? 2

second intention healing or surgical repair

21

What broad factors affect whether a wound will become infected?

bacteria
local wound environment
local and systemic defence

22

What are the 2 main reasons for tissue necrosis?

Inadequate blood supply
Inadequate debridement

23

When are scarring and contracture beneficial? 1

shear injuries

24

What might happen if you have excessive scar formation? 4

stenosis
functional incompetence
restriction of movement
contracture --> loss of function

25

What is a sinus?

blind ending tract that extends from one epithelial surface (epidermal or mucosal). Deep site of inection, FB, sequestrum

26

What is a fistula?

a communicating tract that extends form one epithelial tract to another (e.g. oronasal, rectovaginal, bronchooesophageal)

27

What are forage holes?

When you have an injury involving bone, you might assess the BM's supply of BVs in order to perform microvascular tissue transfer

28

What is forage?

= osteostixis = subchondral drilling
numerous holes are drilled with a fine Kirshner wire or microdrill burr through to subchondral bone so that bleeding is encountered. Particularly useful if bone with the defect is sclerotic or eburnated.

29

Name 2 skin repair techniques that brings additional blood supply back.

axial pattern flapp
microvascular tissue transfer

30

What is the main reason for delayed healing and non-healing wounds?

inflammatory phase of healing is impeded.

31

What are the clinical features of a wound that has delayed healing or non-healing? 8

necrotic/devitalised tissue
excessive exudate
poor blood supply
absence of GT
failure of epithelialisation
chronic painful wound
recurrent breakdown
infection

32

Why might GT formation be impaired?

necrotic or devitalised tissue in wound
infection
movement
poor blood supply
mechanical abrasion

33

What are good therapeutic approaches to impaired GT formation? 5

remove impediments (further debridement)
excise old GT bed
enhance blood supply
reconstruct using tissue with good blood supply
support/immbolise

34

Why might epithelialisation be impaired?

necrotic or devitalised tissue in wound
infection
exchar
movement
poor blood supply
mechanical abrasion surface trauma

35

What is an eschar?

a slough of dead tissue that is cast off from the surface of the skin, especially after a burn injury

36

Why might wound contraction be inhibited? 4

tension in local skin
lack of local skin
restrictive fibrosis
tight bandages

37

What therapy might be suitable for impaired epithelialisation? 4

remove impediments (further debridement)
treat any infection
enhance blood supply
protect

38

What therapy might be suitable for a wound that is failing to contract? 2

excision of restrictive scar
wound reconstruction using skin flap or graft

39

What is an indolent wound?

one that is slow to heal

40

What should you consider with indolent/pocket wounds? 3

Identify cause
Infection?
How healthy is tissue?
Do we need to bring a flap for blood supply?

41

How can an indolent pocket wound be treated? 4

excise wound
tension free closure - reconstruction
manage dead space
enhance local vascular supply - omentalisation

42

When might post-operative haemorrhage occur?

Failure of intra-operative haemorrhage (usually)
coagulopathy (sometimes)

43

What circumstances dictate surgical management of bleeding?

severe arterial bleeding or arterial bleeding that isn't responsive to conservative management
wound dehisence due to pressure
development of compartment syndrome
secondary infection of haematoma

44

What may aid the resolution of a haematoma once formed?

application of a warm compress for 10 minutes, 3 times daily, over 7 days

45

Are traumatic or surgical wounds generally more affected by oedema?

traumatic wounds generally more eaffected

46

Give some examples of wounds where post-op odemea may be more marked

regional mastectomy with tissue undermining
reverse saphenous conduit flap
free skin graft during the phase of plasmatic imbibition
large distal wound allowed to heal by second intention
LN excision

47

What should you do in in the case of regional oedema?

investigate veins and lymphatics and LNs draining the region for pathological processes causing occlusion

48

What should you investigate with generalised oedema?

investigate for the presence of:
hypoproteinaemia
cardiac disease

49

How would your treat mild and moderate oedema?

MILD - may not require specific therapy
MODERATE - massage, hot and cold packing and physio, bandaging carefully, remove sutures if they are contributing to vascular occlusion

50

How do you treat a small seroma?

generally of no consequence
don't require treatment
resolve with time (usually 2-3 weeks)

51

How might a large seroma be treated?

drainage by aspiration
+/- corticosteroid injection
management of dead space with bandage
limitation of movement
drainage by an indwelling drain (passive or active suction)
removal of sutures and healing by second intention

*Perform all with strict aseptic technique*

52

How should dead space within a wound be managed?

ONE OR MORE OF THE FOLLOWING:
suture closure and tacking of tissue planes
use of a drain
compression of dead space with bandage

53

What is the usual cause of wound dehisence?

rarely a primary problem caused by inability of tissue to heal but usually secondary to another problem associated with the wound bed and the surgical technique and judgement

54

What are the two broad causes of wound dehisence?

Excessive forces
Poor wound holding strength

55

What may be the initial signs of wound dehisence?

serosanguinous discharge from wound edges
non-painful SC wound swelling

56

What may precede wound dehisence in some wounds?

necrosis of wound edge
extensive cutaneous bruising
presence of serum below skin
serosanguinous discharge

57

True/false - in some wounds, the deeper wound layers may dehisce while the skin remains intact.
Why is this important?

True - thus the appropriate treatment depends on the tissue layer that has suffered dehiscence and the cause of this.

58

What are the 4 classical signs of inflammation?

heat, redness, pain and swelling

59

What are local signs of wound infection?

4 classical signs of inflammation
serosanguinous - purulent discharge

60

How long is some local inflammation and sometimes pyrexia after surgery present for?

should resolve within 48 hours. If it carries on longer than this, it may indicate infection (a serosanguinous discharge from the wound 3-5 days after surgery is a strong indicator of wound infection).

61

Where is infection prone to establishing?

the site of invasive devices (e.g. IV catheters)

62

Outline the different colours of necrotic tissue

red -brown - black - purple
(as the tissue becomes progressively dehydrated)

63

Define wound contracture

the loss of function of a body part, usually as a result of excessive scarring

64

What is the best way to prevent wound contracture?

early recognition of wounds at risk

65

Which wounds are unlikely to heal by second intention?

if they are more than half the circumference of the limb

66

What might be required treatment if contracture occurs?

z-plasties
scar excsiion with reconstruction
partial myotomies
temporary splintage
physio
early return to normal activity

67

Why are adhesions uncommon in small animals?

more efficient fibrinolytic system that prevents adhesions developing

68

What factors disrupt the equilibrium between normal fibrin deposition and fibrinolysis? 4

ischaemia
haemorrhage
FBs
infection

69

What is sclerosing encapsulating peritonitis?

represents a particular type of extensive adhesion development, where the entire intestinal tract is encased and tethered within a sheet of fibrous tissue

70

What is useful to create a bloodless field for the exploration of draining tracts affecting the distal limbs?

ESMARCH BANDAGE (avoid in presence of suppuration, DVT or neoplasia) and TOURNIQUET (avoid in traumatised limbs, vascular injury, circulatory compromise)

71

What extends form the holes created in forage or osteostixis?

leucocytes
fibroblasts
new capillaries
DONT WEAKEN ALREADY TRAUMATISED BONE (especially metacarpal and metatarsal)

72

When should bone be excised?

If exposed bone protrudes above wound surface, it isn't likely to be covered by GT and, if not critical to salvage of the body part, it should be excised to the level of or below the GT tissue bed.

73

Suggest ways of improving wound vascularity - 3

muscle flaps
omentalisation
local skin flaps
(distant skin flaps and free skin grafts are ultimately dependent on revascularisation form the recipient bed so are poor options in this case)

74

What are the two main reasons for failure of wound contraction?

peripheral countertension (due to lack of loose skin around wound)
restrictive fibrosis (mechanically impairs skin advancement from local wound edges)

75

What happens in indolent pocket wounds?

in these wounds, GT forms with pliable skin around the wound, but the surrounding skin becomes elevated from the wound bed and doesn't adhere to the margins of the defect. a cavity lined by GT forms in the hypodermal space. Epithelial cells from skin edges may migrate to line the dermal surface and the skin edges will not advance, but tend to curl under. The GT becomes chronic with increases in the amount of fibrous tissue and reduction in vascular tissue. It may become infected.

76

Where are indolent pocket wounds most frequently seen?

inguinal, axillary and flank regions
particularly in cats

77

How are indolent pocket wounds successfully managed?

infection control
excision of scar border
excision of restrictive dermal scar to allow skin to advance
closure of wound with suturing of skin edges directly to each other
anchoring skin edges to underlying GT bed
management of dead space with drains
use of local skin flaps (if primary closure cannot be achieved)
omentalisation (if vascular supply to wound is affected)

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