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Acute Wound Care


An acute wound is an injury that causes a break in the skin.


Informed consent

is a legal document that explains the tests, treatments, or procedures that you may need. Informed consent means you understand what will be done and can make decisions about what you want. You give your permission when you sign the consent form. You can have someone sign this form for you if you are not able to sign it. You have the right to understand your medical care in words you know. Before you sign the consent form, understand the risks and benefits of what will be done. Make sure all your questions are answered.


is a small tube placed in your vein that is used to give you medicine or liquids.

Td vaccine

is a booster shot used to help prevent tetanus and diphtheria. The Td booster may be given to adolescents and adults every 10 years or for certain wounds and injuries.


  • Antibiotics help treat or prevent an infection caused by bacteria.
  • NSAIDs help decrease swelling, pain, and fever.
  • Acetaminophen decreases pain and fever.


  • Blood tests may be done to get information about your overall health.
  • An x-ray is a picture of your bones and tissues in the wound area. Healthcare providers use the pictures to look for broken bones, injuries, or foreign objects such as glass or metal.
  • A wound culture is a test of fluid or tissue used to find the cause of your infection.


  • Cleansing is done with soap and water to wash away germs and decrease the risk of infection. Sterile water further cleans the wound. The cleaning is done under high pressure with a catheter tip and large syringe. A solution that kills germs may also be used.
  • Debridement is done to clean and remove objects, dirt, or dead tissues from the open wound. Healthcare providers may also drain the wound to clean out pus.
  • Closure of the wound is done with stitches, staples, skin adhesive, or other treatments. This may be done if the wound is wide or deep. Stitches may be needed if the wound is in an area that moves a lot, such as the hands, feet, and joints. Stitches may help to keep the wound from getting infected. They may also decrease the amount of scarring you have. Some wounds may heal better without stitches.


The wound may be deep and cause injury to muscles, blood vessels, nerves, bones, and other body parts. The injury can lead to severe loss of blood and tissues. Treatment may be very painful. Lack of blood supply to the injured area may lead to tissue death. A scar may form on your skin as it heals. You may be at risk for an infection. The infection may spread to other parts or organs of the body. This can be life-threatening. People who smoke, have diabetes, or have a weakened immune system are at higher risk for an infection.


You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your caregivers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment.

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.

Learn more about Acute Wound Care (Inpatient Care)

Micromedex® Care Notes