What is the role of lab tests in wound care?

Updated: Apr 24, 2020
  • Author: Brian J Daley, MD, MBA, FACS, FCCP, CNSC; Chief Editor: Zubin J Panthaki, MD, CM, FACS, FRCSC  more...
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Answer

The following tests may be useful to identify factors associated with wound development or those that can slow wound healing:

  • CBC count to assess for leukocytosis, anemia, and/or thrombocytopenia

  • Analysis of the patient's basic metabolic profile to look for renal insufficiency and electrolyte abnormalities

  • Determination of serum protein, albumin, prealbumin, and transferrin levels to assess the patient's nutritional status

  • Coagulation studies to evaluate for abnormalities, especially if deep wound excision is required

  • Tissue cultures of wound to determine appropriate antibiotic therapy

Additional studies that may play a role in evaluating specific wound etiologies include vascular laboratory studies (eg, plethysmography, pulse-volume recordings [PVRs]) to assess the hemodynamic significance of arterial occlusive disease.


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