Which histologic findings are characteristic of pressure injuries (pressure ulcers)?

Updated: Mar 26, 2020
  • Author: Christian N Kirman, MD; Chief Editor: John Geibel, MD, MSc, DSc, AGAF  more...
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A concept that has been developed with regard to wound healing has to do with the presence of bacterial biofilms within a wound. Biofilms are structured communities of bacteria that may exist on a wound surface. A microscopic analysis of chronic wound specimens revealed the presence of densely aggregated bacterial colonies, often within their own extracellular matrix; however, these microscopic findings were not seen in acute wounds. [72]

Multiple in vivo studies have shown that wound healing is delayed when these biofilms are present in the wound. [73, 74] The biofilms seem to protect the underlying bacteria and provide resistance to antibiotic treatment and the body’s own immune system. Discussions among expert panels on wound healing have concluded that the most effective means of managing biofilms within wounds is to remove the biofilm; however, optimal methods of removal have yet to be clearly defined. [75]

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