Chapter 4. Wound Care

4.1 Introduction

Wound healing is a complex physiological process. It occurs after an injury in the cells and tissues of our bodies to restore function of the tissue. The healing process is affected by the severity of the wound, location, extent of injury, and other external and internal factors that will either inhibit or promote wound healing. A health care provider must understand how to assess a wound, assess external and internal factors, and determine treatment to optimize the healing process.

Learning Outcomes

  • Describe six factors that affect wound healing, and possible strategies that the nurse can implement to promote wound healing.
  • Describe four stages of (uncomplicated) wound healing.
  • Describe 2  individual, 2 environmental and 2 wound factors that contribute to risk of infection and possible strategies that the nurse can implement to decrease that risk
  • Perform a comprehensive wound assessment.
  • Differentiate situations that require sterile versus clean technique when performing dressing changes.
  • Perform the following skills following principles of asepsis:
    • Simple dressing change
    • Wound irrigation
    • Wound packing
    • Staple removal
    • Suture removal
    • Empty and remove JP and hemovac drains


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Clinical Procedures for Safer Patient Care Copyright © 2018 by Thompson Rivers University is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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