Do you have a deep cut or surgical incision that isn't healing as quickly as you'd like? Did you know that many factors contribute to the healing process? Certain conditions also lead to slower healing wounds.
At the Vein, Heart, and Vascular Institute, our team has the solution for all of your wound healing needs. Our board-certified physician, Dr. Hesham Fakhri, specializes in wound care and can help figure out why your wound isn't healing.
How do wounds heal?
After your body sustains a wound, it immediately begins the healing process. Although you can’t see it happen in the beginning, your body knows when a wound occurs and starts working to repair the damage.
Your body goes through four distinct stages when you obtain some sort of wound. The four stages of wound healing are:
Usually when you have a wound, it bleeds. The first stage of wound healing involves stopping the bleeding. Your blood begins to clot within seconds of a wound and starts repairing the wound by creating a scab.
This part of healing involves your blood vessels narrowing, which helps to manage bleeding. While that’s happening, platelets, which are cells that help clot your blood, begin to congregate, helping to plug the wound. Fibrin, which helps hold the platelets in place, then forms around the wound, forming a scab.
3. Growth or proliferative
After the bleeding has stopped and your body has formed a scab, it’s time for your body to rebuild the tissue around the wound. This involves red blood cells and collagen, both of which allow new tissue growth in the affected area.
This stage occurs after your wound seems like it’s healed, but your body is still at work. In this stage, the wound may be red and itchy, which signals that your body is still working on repairing the tissue.
What causes slow wound healing?
Wounds stem from a lot of different things. You could have a deep laceration from a car accident, or you could have an incision from surgery. No matter what the wound is from, it should heal relatively quickly, depending on the severity.
So why isn’t your wound healing? If you’ve had your wound for more than three months and it doesn’t seem to be getting any better, it’s time to see Dr. Fakhri.
The No. 1 reason for poor healing has to do with your blood. Certain areas, like your legs or feet, require good circulation in order for any kind of injury to heal. If you aren’t getting good blood flow to your lower extremities, there’s a good chance you’ll have poor wound healing.
Your age is another crucial factor in wound healing. As you get older, things in your body don’t work as quickly as they used to. This is the case with your healing properties as well.
You also are at higher risk for certain conditions when you get older, which plays a factor in wound healing. Some of the diseases that affect wound healing the most include:
- Vascular disease
- High blood pressure
These conditions paired with older age can lead to very slow healing that may require specialized care and treatments. Other factors that lead to poor wound healing are poor nutrition and infection.
Tips for quicker recovery
Treatment for slow healing wounds may include medications and specialized bandages to promote healing. There are some things you can do to help speed the recovery time, including:
- Eliminate alcohol
- Eat a well-balanced diet
- Change your dressing regularly
- Get plenty of sleep
- Watch for signs of infection
Most importantly, follow Dr. Fakhri’s recommendations and directions as closely as possible. He gives you a detailed plan to help your specific type of wound heal so you can get back to living your life.
If you’re dealing with problematic wounds, call one of our two conveniently located offices in Wesley Chapel or Tampa, Florida, to make an appointment. You can also schedule a consultation using our online booking tool.