Theory Of Moist Wound Healing

The principle of moist wound healing challenges the normal physiological process of wound repair; ‘dry healing’ seen by the formation of a scab. It is recognised that in moist occlusive / semi-occlusive environments, epithelialisation occurs at twice the rate when compared to a dry one1. Moist wound healing can be achieved with advanced wound care dressings; a wet environment can be detrimental as this can lead to maceration and tissue breakdown2.

Moist wound healing is not suitable for all wounds.  Necrotic digits due to ischaemia and / or neuropathy should be kept dry or monitored very closely (daily often). These patients experience problems fighting infection. Modern wound dressings can be used but the wound needs to be monitored closely to identify for early signs of clinical infection and to prevent maceration. Skin barrier preparations which are easy to use, do not sting even on vulnerable or sore skin, such as LBF ‘no sting’ barrier wipes may be used around the wound if exudate levels are high and a risk of maceration is present.


  1. inter G (1962) Formation of the Scab and the Rate of Epithelisation of Superficial Wounds in the Skin of the Young Domestic Pig. Nature 193, 293 - 294
  2. Bale S and Jones V (1997) Wound Care Nursing. Baillière Tindall.

Caveat: The information given is a guide only and should not replace clinical judgement.

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