introduction and phases of wound healing
personal factors that
affect wound healing - nutrition, fluids, smoking
personal factors that
affect wound healing - diabetes, movement, steroids,
alcohol, stress, sun exposure, other factors
surgical and post operative
factors that affect wound healing
- bromelain, vitamin K cream
scar formation and treatment
hyperbaric oxygen therapy
Wound healing is a complex, delicate process during
which time many factors can affect your outcome. Anything
which creates trauma or injury to the skin can create
In cosmetic surgery, this can be as limited as a surgical
incision or more extensive such as laser skin resurfacing.
Fortunately, you don't have to rely completely on good
genes or your surgeon's technique to improve your chances
at timely, aesthetically pleasing results, although
those two factors do help considerably.
Phases of Wound Healing
There are three phases to healing: the inflammatory
phase, the proliferative phase, and the remodeling or
maturation phase. The inflammatory phase begins immediately
and lasts 2 to 6 days, during which time bleeding stops,
white blood cells fight bacterial infection, and collagen
formation begins. (Collagen is what scars are made of
and what holds wounds together). In this phase, the
wound is usually warm, red, swollen, and painful.
After a few days, the proliferative phase takes place,
and continues for about 3 to 4 weeks. (To proliferate
means to grow by rapid production). In this phase, collagen
continues to be produced, pulling the edges of the wound
together, and new capillaries (tiny blood vessels) are
formed to aid in healing.
This can cause visible thickening of the skin edges
and new red, bumps called granulation tissue in the
shrinking wound. Cells that help to keep the wound clean
can cause the wound to be wet, weeping, and white or
yellow in appearance. (If thick, white pus is present,
this is a sign of an infection and should be treated).
Finally, the maturation phase begins, and continues
for a period from several weeks to several years. This
slow process entails the formation of even more collagen
to strengthen the wounds, and then scar "remodeling"
to break down excess collagen in the scar. Scar remodeling
is what can change a thick, red, raised scar to a thin,
flat, white scar over a period of months to years.
To Next Section - Personal
Factors That Affect Wound Healing: Nutrition, Fluids,