Introduction to Wound Healing

Types of Wound debridement


A. Autolytic Debridement

  • Achieved with moist interactive dressings by use of hydrogels and hydrocolloids
    (hydrogel is not an ACTIVE debriding agent, but rather donates moisture to the wound bed, so enhances debridement)
  • Slow
  • Painless
  • Liquefies slough and promotes growth of granulation tissue
  • Natural breakdown by naturally occurring enzymes such as collagen and protease found in wound fluid

B. Mechanical Debridement

  • Removal of dead tissue through use of wet to dry dressings and irrigation

C. Surgical/Sharp Debridement

  • Must be done by a trained healthcare professional with support of institutional policy

“Gold Standard”

  • Fastest and most aggressive method of debridement
  • Removal of tissue through use of scissors or scalpel

D. Enzymatic Debridement

  • Most selective form of debridement
  • Enzymes work to degrade debris (e.g. Santyl®)

E. Biological Debridement

  • Maggots are used to remove necrotic tissue from the wound bed (currently not in use at LHSC)

F. Osmotic Debridement

  • Creates chemical pull causing necrotic tissue to be lifted off
  • Products assisting with chemical pull include hypergels and mesalt
  • Faster than enzymatic debridement

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The content and images on the Wound Care Site are intended for Health Professionals and may be disturbing to some.
Last Updated July 20, 2009 | © 2007, LHSC, London Ontario Canada