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wet-damp dressings

Posted
by paisa paisa (New) New

here is a question us students here can't seem to agree on:

why do you apply a wet-damp dressing to a wound?

a)to protect against infection

b)to promote circulation

c)for debridement

d)to promote healing

Thanks in advance.

Daytonite, BSN, RN

Specializes in med/surg, telemetry, IV therapy, mgmt. Has 40 years experience.

here is a question us students here can't seem to agree on:

why do you apply a wet-damp dressing to a wound?

a)to protect against infection

b)to promote circulation

c)for debridement

d)to promote healing

Thanks in advance.

Well, this happens to be a situation I've gone through twice, personally. I currently have a draining wound that is being packed with wet to dry dressings. The answer is "C". The moisture of the dressings helps P-U-L-L drainage out the wound. The wound can't heal if there is drainage and gunk present in it. And, in fact, sets up the conditions for an infection to develop. There is actually a new device that can be applied to open wounds that continually applies gentle suction to keep open wounds clean of drainage and debris that in studies has demonstrated much faster wound healing. While the ultimate goal is to promote healing of a wound, it won't happen as long as there is drainage and debris present, so that has to be removed first which is why "C" is the answer.

The answer is debridement. Although many places are not doing that any more due to the many docs think it may lead to infections. Or at least that is the trend around my area.

KeechieSan

Specializes in ICU, MICU, SICU. Has 8 years experience.

here is a question us students here can't seem to agree on:

why do you apply a wet-damp dressing to a wound?

a)to protect against infection

b)to promote circulation

c)for debridement

d)to promote healing

Thanks in advance.

I believe the answer is C... but honestly, I can't say that I've ever done a wet-to-dry dressing (I'm assuming that is what you mean by wet-damp?). They just don't seem to be too popular anymore, I think there was some research that they promote infection or something?

Fiona59

Has 18 years experience.

Saline soak is the term used out here.

I have vague memories of being told it's to promote healing from the bottom up and to prevent the formation of a tunnel in the wound.

Wound vacs are great but very costly to use.

Daytonite, BSN, RN

Specializes in med/surg, telemetry, IV therapy, mgmt. Has 40 years experience.

I believe the answer is C... but honestly, I can't say that I've ever done a wet-to-dry dressing (I'm assuming that is what you mean by wet-damp?). They just don't seem to be too popular anymore, I think there was some research that they promote infection or something?

Oh, believe me, they are still done. I had colon surgery two months ago, followed by a wound seroma and a wound abscess that went septic. The crater was 4 inches deep. Two months later we are still doing wet to dry dressings trying to get this thing healed. You won't see these patients in the hospital unless the wounds get infected and go septic and need IV antibiotics because they can be managed at home. I had the same thing happen after a hysterectomy 27 years ago and was packing and dressing a six inch deep wound every four hours for 6 weeks while on Keflex until the wound finally stopped draining and closed up.

IcanHealYou

Specializes in Medicine.

So wet to dry and wet to damp serve the same purpose?

Fiona59

Has 18 years experience.

So wet to dry and wet to damp serve the same purpose?

Could you clarify that?

A saline soak dressing is usually done 2 or 3 times a day. If the dressing has dried out between changing times it needs to be moistened before removal. Most dressings will still be damp upon removal if done on a timely basis.

IcanHealYou

Specializes in Medicine.

Could you clarify that?

A saline soak dressing is usually done 2 or 3 times a day. If the dressing has dried out between changing times it needs to be moistened before removal. Most dressings will still be damp upon removal if done on a timely basis.

Someone brought this to my attention in another thread as well. She said that no one uses wet to dry dressing to debride but I've found in multiple sources that it does. And in NCLEX questions wet to damp dressings are used to debride as well.

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