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Posts Tagged ‘Maceration’

Maceration and Hydrogels? Just Say Whoa

Thursday, July 21st, 2016

How do you use hydrogel dressings to keep wounds moist without causing maceration? Very carefully.  

 

Maceration and Hydrogels? Just Say Whoa

 

If you’ve ever taken a long bath or spent an afternoon in a swimming pool, you’re familiar with what happens to your hands and feet: they become soft, white, and wrinkled up like prunes. This is a classic case of maceration, which occurs when skin tissue is exposed to excessive moisture over a period of time.

As clinicians, we regularly treat patients with wounds (which need to be kept moist) that are surrounded by tissue that needs to be kept dry. So knowing how to properly treat the wound without causing maceration makes all the difference in the healing process.
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Hydrogel and Maceration don’t go together!

Monday, January 31st, 2011

Maceration

Hydrogel & Maceration don’t go together!

The Application of Wound Gels:
Maceration is when the skin tissue is exposed to excessive moisture over a period of time. A great example would be if you have been in the bath tub too long and your fingers get pruney. You know how it turns white and softens up? We may see this sometimes in our practice around the wound edge and/or periwound skin. When this happens skin breakdown occurs and may make the wound larger. Maceration can be caused by several different things such as; excessive wound drainage, urinary incontinence, sweating and improper use of wound treatments.

When using a hydrogel to a wound we need to make sure it stays in the wound bed and not on the edges or periwound area. Using a cotton swab gives you easy control of where the hydrogel should be applied.

Sometimes you will see clinicians just taking the tube of hydrogel and start squirting it in to the wound, but when they place the secondary dressing over top of the wound the hydrogel may tend to ooze over the edges and on to the good tissue and cause maceration. Not good you always want to maintain control of where the hydrogel is going. Your goal is to keep the hydrogel in the wound bed only.

TIP: Use moisture barrier, like skin prep, around the wound edges to prevent from maceration-this is just a good habit to do every time you use hydrogel as a treatment.

Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions and make sure the products you are using in the wounds are appropriate.

For more information about becoming Wound Care Certified and our New Diabetic Wound Certification Courses, please visit http://www.wcei.net