Wound healing is a complex and highly regulated process which is critical for maintaining the barrier function of the skin. Due to numerous disease processes, the cascade of events involved in the wound healing process can be affected, which often results in chronic, non-healing wounds. Such wounds lead to significant discomfort and distress to the patient while draining the medical system of an enormous amount of resources.

Normally, the process of wound healing progresses steadily through an orderly set of stages. A wound that doesn't heal within 30 days is considered to be chronic. The process of chronic wound healing generally stalls in one or more of the phases. Here are the most significant factors that affect chronic wound treatment or the chronic wound healing process:

Wound Type
The characteristics of a wound significantly affect the speed of wound recovery. It is quite obvious that larger wounds will take longer to heal, but the shape of a wound can also play a part in the time taken for healing. Linear wounds typically heal much faster than the rectangular ones, and the circular ones are slowest to heal. Moreover, the wound healing process also gets slower when there are necrotic tissue, desiccation, and foreign bodies present in the wound.

Even a small skin break can allow virus, bacteria, or fungus to enter the wound site. Generally, these pathogens are overtaken & eliminated by the white blood cells and other components of the immune system. But when there is an infection creating a sore or lesion, then there is a need for excellent wound care treatment and perhaps the administration of antibiotics.

Chronic Diseases
Patients suffering from diabetes or have diseases which affect their circulatory system may have a slow wound healing process. For efficient wound healing, it is important to have good blood flow. So, when there are chronic conditions compromising the blood flow to the wound site, it may require therapeutic intervention for its treatment. Thus, individuals with chronic wounds are advised to seek expert medical consultation for a comprehensive assessment to identify appropriate chronic wound care treatment.

Age Of The Patient
There are various overall changes in the healing capacity of a wound that is related to the age of the patient. Studies have shown that people above the age of 60 usually face delay in the wound healing process because of the physical changes that occur with advanced age. In addition to the multiple existing comorbidities, there is a decrease in the inflammatory response of the body, a delay in angiogenesis & the process of epithelialization gets slower. Some visible changes to the skin such as age spots are related to the alteration in melanocytes, which is due to a decreased function of the sebaceous glands. Also, decreased collagen synthesis is attributed to the slower scar formation in the wound healing process.

Poor Nutrition
In the case of the chronically ill or geriatric patient, poor nutrition can cause insufficient resources for the body to promote wound healing process. Typically, infection increases the protein and caloric requirements of the body leading to inadequate nutrition. Moreover, wounds can exude a large amount of protein daily, especially in the case of large pressure ulcers or leg ulcers. So if the calories are inefficient, the body may start breaking down protein for energy, further depleting its ability to heal.

Poor Blood Circulation
As we all know, blood delivers the necessary components to the tissues for the wound healing process to take place. So, people with the issue of low blood pressure or vascular disease can have problems with delayed healing. Blocked or narrowed blood vessels, diseases of the heart, kidneys and lungs can also lead to the issues in the body delivering vital components for wound healing,

Lack of Hydration
A lack of moisture around the surface of a wound can decrease blood oxygenation, halt cellular migration, and seriously delay the chronic wound healing process. Dehydration caused either due to depletion of sodium or water can lead to delay in all the aspects of the wound care healing process. While a normal person requires 64 ounces of fluid daily, a person trying to recover from a wound will have to drink more to promote travelling of white blood cells to the wound site in order to supply the required oxygen & nutrients.

Therefore, any of the above factors may lead to a delay in the wound healing process. Thus, it is important to seek medical guidance for your chronic wound treatment.

Author's Bio: 

Avinash is a technical person who loves writing about anything that is directly or remotely connected to technology. From hardcore tech stories to the overall impact of technology in life, Avinash is passionate about everything. When he is not surfing the Internet, he is busy with his favourite beats.