1 year ago

Wound Dressings Overview

  • Text
  • Dressings
  • Moist
  • Antimicrobial
  • Sizes
  • Varying
  • Impregnated
  • Absorbent
  • Secondary
  • Exudate
  • Provides
  • Factsheet
Independence Australia's health experts have developed a complete overview guide for different types of wound care products.


Honey Dressings Properties Advantages Disadvantages Product forms • Impregnated with 100% medical grade Manuka Honey (Leptospermum spp.) • Use on infected or highly contaminated wounds. • Antimicrobial, anti-fungal, antiviral actions, antiinflammatory. Hydrocolloids • A wafer type of dressing. • Contains gel forming agents in an adhesive compound. • Laminated onto a flexible, water-resistant outer layer that turns into a gel when exudate is absorbed. Hydrofibre & Gelling Dressings Hydrogel Dressings Hypertonic Salt Dressings Impregnated Mesh Dressing • Made from 100% carboxymethylcellulose. • Can absorb up to 30 times in weight and provide less risk of maceration because of vertical fluid absorption properties. • High-water content. • Contains insoluble polymers. • Water content varies between 30-90%. • Most contain a gel forming agent called carboxymethylcellulose. • Cotton and /or synthetic gauze. • Impregnated with hypertonic saline. • Cleanses wound by wicking away necrotic tissue and purulent debris. • Hypertonic properties will inhibit bacterial growth. • Made from open mesh, cotton, rayon, viscose or gauze impregnated with white or soft paraffin or medicated antiseptic. • A primary dressing applied directly to the wound bed. Silicone Mesh • An open weave product. • Designed to be ‘tacky’ but not too moist and not too dry so it can lie on good skin. Silver Dressings • A broad spectrum antimicrobial agent. • Achieves antimicrobial action by generating and releasing silver into wound. • Some donate silver into wound bed while others kill bacteria absorbed into core of dressing. • Promotes moist wound healing. • Use on malodourous wounds. • Promotes autolytic debridement on slough. • Can be easily cut, shaped or moulded to fit any wound type. • Provides a moist healing wound environment. • Absorbs exudate. • Protects newly healed wound or intact skin. • For use in non-infected wounds with minimal exudate and dry wounds. • Promotes a moist wound healing environment. • Autolytic debridement • Atraumatic removal of dressing from wound bed. • Aids in preventing peri wound skin breakdown. • Promotes a moist wound healing environment. • Rehydrates a necrotic eschar, helps in its removal without harming good cell growth. • Autolytic debridement. • Maintains a moist wound healing environment. • Autolytic debridement of loose slough or eschar. • Absorbs exudate and bacteria. • Apply directly to wound, no overlap onto healthy tissue. • Provides a moist environment that facilitates epithelial migration. • Reduces adhesion. • Allows atraumatic removal from the wound bed. • Silicone is inert and enables transfer of exudate to a secondary dressing. • Can be removed from wound without trauma. • Does not need to be cut to wound size. • Active against a variety of micro-organisms including Staphylococcus aureus, methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). • Protects clinically infected wounds or critically colonised wounds. • Provides sustained antimicrobial activity. Sources: Wounds R Us, What the best wounds are wearing, 2019 International Wound Infection Institute, Principles of Best Practice, 2016 Champions for Skin Integrity, Wound Dressing Guide, 2013 • Could lead to peri wound skin maceration because liquefies when warm. • Not recommended for people with allergies to honey, bees, algae or seaweed. • Monitor blood sugar levels in diabetic patients. • Do not use on infected wounds. • Use with caution on feet because can cause peri wound skin maceration. • Not appropriate for heavily exuding wounds. • Can only be used on wounds producing a moderate to high level of exudate. • Requires a secondary dressing. • Not to be used in a highly exuding wound. • Do not use on ischemic foot wounds. • Not to be used on bleeding or potentially bleeding wounds. • Not to be used on dry wounds. • Not to be used on viable tendon or bone. • Does not absorb exudate. • Requires frequent changes to avoid drying out and damage to good cells when dressing is removed. • Requires a secondary dressing. • Not recommended for people with allergies to silicone products. • Requires a secondary dressing. • Must cleanse wounds with sterile water because some silvers are inactivated by normal saline. • Do not use in conjunction with other topical antimicrobials. • Cease after 2 weeks if no improvement. © Independence Australia Group 2019. No part of this fact sheet may be reproduced in whole or in part in any manner without permission. • Gel • Paste • Impregnated gauze • Varying sheet sizes and shapes • Paste • Varying sheet sizes • Packing ribbon • Can be impregnated with antimicrobial agents such as silver. • Flexible sheets • Gel • Impregnated gauze • Sheets • Packing ribbon • Varying sheet sizes • Varying sheet sizes • Foams • Alginates • Gelling cellulose fibres • Films • Hydrogels • Sheets • Packing ribbon • Gel