Wound Inspection and Aseptic techniques in Wound Care
Wounds that need to be dressed using an aseptic technique are deep wounds that involve muscle and/or bone, and post-operative wounds. The aim of an aseptic technique is to prevent secondary infection of the wound during the dressing.
These should be sterile at operation and, in most cases, after operation. Infection can be introduced during the operation or post-operatively via hands and contaminated dressings. It is best not to interfere with surgical wounds unless indicated, e.g. if there are signs of infection and a change of dressing is required.
These are potentially contaminated with environmental and fecal bacteria and may become colonized with hospital pathogens, which may then be transferred to other patients via the hands of the staff.
Procedure for Aseptic Technique Wound Care
Wounds must not be touched with dirty hands and wound care should be an aseptic procedure:
- Decontaminate hands with alcohol gel or wash hands using an antiseptic solution. Dry hands and wear sterile gloves.
- Open dressing pack (use plastic / paper sheet as sterile field)
- Remove existing dressing (with hand inside clean plastic bag or clean glove, remove glove)
- Clean the wound thoroughly using forceps and cotton wool or gauze soaked in a cleaning solution. Do not use hands.
- Exude any fluids from an infected wound by pressing with two sterile gauze pieces held with two forceps.
- Take specimens of pus or exudates for bacteriological examination.
- Wipe the wound site as dry as possible.
- Cover the wound if indicated.
- Discard all dirty dressings in a clinical waste bag.
- Wash and dry hands.
The dressing trolley must be cleaned with hot water and detergent daily and if it becomes visibly contaminated. It should not be used for other purposes.
Dr Binish Arif