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Debridement is the removal of unhealthy tissue from a wound to promote healing. It can be done by surgical, chemical, mechanical, or autolytic (using your body's own processes) removal of the tissue.
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Debridement is used to clean dead and contaminated material from your wound to aid in healing. The procedure is most often done for the following reasons:
- To remove tissue contaminated by bacteria, foreign tissue, dead cells, or crusting
- To create a neat wound edge to decrease scarring
- To aid in the healing of very severe burns or pressure sores (decubitus ulcers)
- To get a sample of tissue for testing and diagnosis
Complications are rare, but no procedure is completely free of risk. If you are having a debridement, your doctor will review a list of possible complications which may include:
- Delayed healing
- Removal of healthy tissue with mechanical debridement
Factors that may increase the risk of complications include:
- Pre-existing medical conditions
- Use of steroid or other immunosuppressive medicines
- Poor nutrition
- Poor circulation
- Immune disorders
Call Your Doctor
After you leave the hospital, contact your doctor if any of the following occurs:
- Signs of infection, including fever and chills
- Redness, swelling, increasing pain, excessive bleeding,...