It's not healing
A chronic wound is any wound that lasts longer than three weeks, but Dr. Yaakovian says wounds should start showing signs of improvement within a few days. "If your wound isn't healing after two or three days, we start to worry whether it may end up being a chronic wound," says Dr. Yaakovian.
Redness. The area may be swollen, sore, and red in color right after you've sustained your injury. This is normal as blood is being sent to the area to supply oxygen and other nutrients for healing. But if the wound is still red and swollen after five days, it's a sign that your body is not healing correctly.
Signs of wound infection
But cloudy, yellow-ish drainage or purulent discharge with a pungent or foul odor accompanied with swelling and elevated pain is a sign of an infected wound. Pimple: When a pimple-like crust forms on an injury, it indicates an infection.
Debridement is the most common treatment for stubborn to heal wounds, and involves the removal of unhealthy tissue within a chronic wound to promote the growth of healthy tissue, reduce complications of infection, and speed up the healing process.
Healthy granulation tissue is pink in colour and is an indicator of healing. Unhealthy granulation is dark red in colour, often bleeds on contact, and may indicate the presence of wound infection.
A skin wound that doesn't heal, heals slowly or heals but tends to recur is known as a chronic wound. Some of the many causes of chronic (ongoing) skin wounds can include trauma, burns, skin cancers, infection or underlying medical conditions such as diabetes.
Wound healing can be delayed by systemic factors that bear little or no direct relation to the location of the wound itself. These include age, body type, chronic disease, immunosuppression, nutritional status, radiation therapy, and vascular insufficiencies.
Wounds generally heal in 4 to 6 weeks. Chronic wounds are those that fail to heal within this timeframe. Many factors can lead to impaired healing. The primary factors are hypoxia, bacterial colonization, ischemia, reperfusion injury, altered cellular response, and collagen synthesis defects.
Wounds or sores that take more than a few weeks to heal might be infected and require medical treatment, and often indicate an underlying disease such as diabetes. When you cut or burn yourself, your body begins a three-stage process to repair the damaged skin.
Your wound may look red, swollen, and watery at the beginning. This can be a normal part of healing. The wound may have a red or pink raised scar once it closes. The healing will continue for months to years after this.
The factors discussed include oxygenation, infection, age and sex hormones, stress, diabetes, obesity, medications, alcoholism, smoking, and nutrition. A better understanding of the influence of these factors on repair may lead to therapeutics that improve wound healing and resolve impaired wounds.
Once the wound is clean, there are several techniques to speed up the healing process. These include the use of antibacterial ointments, turmeric, aloe vera, garlic, and coconut oil. A person should seek medical help right away if their wound is large.
YELLOW: wounds that have stalled in the healing process often have the presence of bacterial colonies known as “biofilm”. Biofilm is often not visible, but in some case, a thick yellow to white fibrinous debris can be found along the base of a wound which can represent a biofilm colonization.
Epithelialisation is the regeneration of new skin (epithelium) over a wound and signifies the final stage of healing. Epithelial tissue, light pink in colour, usually migrates inwards from the wound margins or may appear as small islands of tissue over the surface of the wound.
The surrounding area becomes red, and this area gets larger over time. The area surrounding the wound becomes swollen, tender to the touch, or painful. The wound weeps off-color or odorous fluid; this pus may be yellow, greenish, or cloudy. Red streaks spread out from the site of the wound.
Q: Is it better to bandage a cut or sore, or air it out? A: Airing out most wounds isn't beneficial because wounds need moisture to heal. Leaving a wound uncovered may dry out new surface cells, which can increase pain or slow the healing process.
A chronic wound is a wound that does not heal in an orderly set of stages and in a predictable amount of time or wounds that do not heal within three months are often considered chronic. Chronic wounds often remain in the inflammatory stage for too long and may never heal or may take years.
Remodeling or also known as maturation phase is the fourth and final phase in wound healing and lasts from 21 days up to 2 years. In this final and longest phase, collagen synthesis is ongoing in order to strengthen the tissue. Remodeling occurs as wound continues to contract and fibers are being reorganized.
Average Healing Times for Common Injuries
Fibrous connective tissues like ligaments and tendons as well as bones, cartilage, and nerves tend to take the longest to heal.