Why is wound care important?
The skin acts as a protective barrier so any damage to it increases the chances of infection. Wounds can be caused by injury, surgery, pressure or friction. There are two types of wounds: acute and chronic. An acute wound is one that usually heals as it should, within an expected amount of time. A chronic wound is one that develops over a longer period of time.
Examples of chronic wounds include pressure ulcers (also called bed sores or pressure sores), leg ulcers, diabetic wounds (including diabetic foot and diabetic ulcers). Wounds that are slow to heal, or that do not heal, can cause both severe emotional and physical stress. Good wound care aims to support the wound healing process through the use of dressings, pressure relief, and the right nutritional solutions.
The role of nutrition in wound care
The importance of good nutrition in the healing of wounds is widely accepted by healthcare professionals but may not be something we automatically think about. Where good nutrition helps wound healing, poor or undernutrition slows or stops it altogether. There are certain nutrients that have a key role to play in the woundhealing process.
Protein is the building block of all the major organs in the body including skin and muscle. It is essential in making sure that the infection fighting cells of the body function properly and helps repair damaged tissue from the wound.
Other essential nutrients include arginine, vitamin C, E, selenium and zinc, which all play key roles in the wound healing process. Adequate energy intake in the form of carbohydrates and fat is also important as the body needs more than usual to support the woundhealing process. Dehydration can also impair the woundhealing process, so it's essential to ensure plenty of fluids are taken throughout the day.
Nutricia’s role in wound care
Nutricia is committed to improving the quality of life for patients and providing healthcare providers with nutritional solutions to help them in their everyday practice. That's why scientists at our world-class research facilities in Utrecht, the Netherlands, continue to carry out pioneering research into the effective management of wound care through nutrition in order to develop products that can help patients with chronic wounds.