New Products & Practices for Wound Care

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Apps, HydroClean and Honey?

According to PR Newswire, the wound care biologics market is expected to earn 1.42 billion US dollars in 2018. That number is expected to skyrocket by the year 2023, when the market is expected to increase to 2.26 billion US dollars.

That is a jaw-dropping amount of money that we’re spending on wound care. What’s going on?

There are several factors that are driving up the those wound care dollars – primarily diabetic foot ulcers, the aging geriatric population, and a general increase in burn injuries globally.

With the ever-increasing number of wounds requiring advanced wound care, there is new products and practices. Here’s a quick update.

There’s an App for That…

Are you a wound care nurse, that sees patients with stubborn wounds every day?

Do you ever struggle with deciding what type of dressing or what approach to use with a patient? Do you wish you could pick the brains of other wound care nurses?

Well, guess what, wound care nurses? There is an app for that.

The app is called Nurse2Nurse, or N2N for short. The San Antonio-based company KCI created the app safely, ensuring that it is HIPPA-compliant. The app debuted earlier this year at the 2018 Annual Conference of the Wound Ostomy and Continence Nurses Society – it is now available through the Apple App Store and Google Play.

HydroClean plus – a Ground-breaking Dressing

In 2017, the HydroClean plus won the “Most Innovative New Dressing” by the Journal of Wound Care Awards.

What makes this dressing so special and unique, and unlike other dressings?

The HydroClean plus uses a unique “Rinsing-Absorption Mechanism”, meaning that it “…promotes autolytic debridement and supports effective wound cleansing and wound progression in a variety of wounds.”

According to Hartmann, the wound care company who created the HydroClean plus, this dressing is an all-in-one dressing that helps heal wounds by aiding in debridement and moistening the wound bed.

According to their website, the dressing “…removes necrosis and devitalised tissue via autolysis. The dressing is proven to significantly reduce Matrix Metalloprotease (MMPs) levels – one of the main culprits of delayed wound healing – by up to 87 percent. Simultaneously, superabsorbent polyacrylate (SAP) particles in the pad continuously release Ringer’s solution to keep the area moist for up to three days and the antiseptic Polyhexanide (polyhexamethylene biguanide, PHMB) binds bacteria into the wound pad.”

The Future of Wound Care

We’ve come a long way from wound care of years past – but wound care is advancing rapidly over the next couple years.

A company called Histogen has created a dressing called Exceltrix. Exceltrix is currently in the research phase, but the science behind these dressings is astounding.

These dressings utilize a “patient-derived extracellular matrix” and it is thought to act as scaffolding for cells to regenerate in the wound. This matrix contains an anti-inflammatory peptide that also has antimicrobial properties.

What makes these dressings very special and innovative is the fact that they contain “…biologics that promote the growth of blood vessels within the healing tissue. This makes it possible to treat severe and chronic wounds such as diabetic, venous, and pressure ulcers.”

The dressings are thin – approximately three millimeters thick. In order to use them, practitioners simply cut and shape them to the desired size and shape and place them on the wound. The dressing bonds to surrounding tissues. The dressing can also be layered with additional pieces.

And because they are a biologic dressing, they are made of human tissue, and it is less likely to cause allergic reactions than animal matrix, which also require immunosuppressants in order to remain effective.

You Put That… Where?

We put it on our toast. Pour it in our tea. Eat a teaspoon when we’re sick.

And apparently, we are also now applying honey as a wound dressing?

Actually, honey has been used in wound care in traditional medicine for thousands of years. It has recently gained traction in modern medicine as a reputable treatment for wounds – and now we are starting to know why.

According to WOUNDS, a peer-reviewed journal that focuses entirely on wound research and wound care, there are several qualities of honey that make it effective at healing wounds:

  • The acidity speeds up the process of oxygen being released from hemoglobin, meaning that the wound environment becomes less favorable.
  • Honey has a high osmolality, which means that it draws fluids out of the wound.
  • Honey has antibacterial properties, but the type of honey matters. While all honeys have this antibacterial activity, it manifests in different ways, depending on what type of honey is applied:
    • Most honeys exhibit antibacterial activity due to “…hydrogen peroxide, but much of this is inactivated by the enzyme catalase that is present in blood, serum, and wound tissues.”
    • In manuka honey, “…the activity is due to methylglyoxal which is not inactivated.” Manuka honey is durable when used in products and withstands dilution while maintaining its antibacterial activity.
  • Honey is also thought to reduce inflammation and increase autolytic debridement.

The Bottom Line…

There is no disputing the fact that medicine is evolving. Because it is evolving, we’re living longer – but not always healthier. Wound care is an exciting field to watch, because new therapies are emerging that may heal and promote growth of simultaneously.

Resources

Alliance of Advanced Biomedical Engineering. (2017, October 9). New wound care product offers the next step in healing. Retrieved from https://aabme.asme.org/posts/new-wound-care-product-offers-the-next-step-in-healing

Hartmann.(2017, March 6). HydroClean plus named “most innovative new dressing” at Journal of Wound Care Awards 2017. Retrieved from https://hartmann.info/en/pages/press/News/2017/03/Most-Innovative-New-Dressing-at-JWC-Awards-2017

McKnight’s Long-Term Care News. (2018, June 5). A new wound care app for nurses. Retrieved from https://www.mcknights.com/products/a-new-wound-care-app-for-nurses/article/771130/

PR Newswire. (2018, June 7). The wound care biologics market is expected to reach USD 2.26 billion by 2023 from USD 1.42 billion in 2018, at a CAGR of 9.8%. Retrieved from https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/the-wound-care-biologics-market-is-expected-to-reach-usd-2-26-billion-by-2023-from-usd-1-42-billion-in-2018–at-a-cagr-of-9-8-300661712.html

Molan, P. & Rhodes, T. (2015, June). Honey: a biologic wound dressing. Retrieved from http://www.woundsresearch.com/article/honey-biologic-wound-dressing

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About Author

Krystina Ostermeyer RN, BSN, CDE
Krystina Ostermeyer RN, BSN, CDE

Krystina is a 30-something RN, BSN, CDE who has worked in a variety of nursing disciplines, from telemetry to allergy/immunotherapy to most recently, diabetes education. She is also a writer and has enjoyed expanding her writing career over the past several years. She balances her careers as a nurse and a writer with being a wife and a mother. She has a four year old son who is an inquisitive, energetic little guy who is up for anything. She also enjoys reading, traveling, cooking, baking, and yoga (both practicing and teaching).

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