Greater concentration on wound care will save NHS millions argues prof of vascular surgery

July 5, 2018, University of Huddersfield
Leg ulcer. Credit: University of Huddersfield

IT is estimated that annually the NHS treats over two million wounds at a cost of £5.3 billion and with tougher financial constraints being announced every year, there needs to be ongoing research to ensure the lack of finances doesn't affect the quality of wound care available.

This was the topic of the opening lecture at the 3rd International Skin Integrity and Tissue Viability Conference hosted by the University of Huddersfield's Institute of Skin Integrity and Infection Prevention (ISIaIP), in conjunction with the Journal of Wound Care.

The conference attracted 110 delegates from around the world and they listened to the former Head of Vascular Surgery at Bradford's Royal Infirmary Professor Peter Vowden, as he gave the opening lecture entitled The Burden of Wound Care.

The recently retired expert explained how impose substantial health economic burden on the UK's NHS.

He argued that it was comparable to that of managing obesity, which in 2012/2013 was valued at £5 billion. "Clinical and economic benefits would accrue from improved systems of care and an increased awareness of the impact that wounds impose on patients and the NHS", said Professor Vowden.

Wound Care specialists

The attendees were also addressed on the contrasting wounds which specialists in Canada encounter with a lecture by Dr. Nicola Waters, Associate Professor at Canada's Thompson Rivers University in Kamloops.

Her talk, Wound management and research in Canada: opportunities and challenges, considered wounds such as the injuries to the hands of bare-back horse riders and the injuries sustained in the attacks from grizzly bears.

Dr. Waters ended the talk by announcing that Thompson Rivers University had recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the University of Huddersfield that will open the doors for new research and exchange partnerships.

Also speaking at the conference was the University's award-winning Lecturer/Consultation Dr. Leanne Atkin who spoke about Harm-free wound care and acknowledged the excellent progress in the treatment of pressure ulcers. However, she cautioned that more needs to be done to raise awareness of the treatment of leg ulcers because, if caught early enough, they could be wholly prevented.

Earlier this year, Dr. Atkin was awarded funding from the Urgo Foundation to launch a national campaign to ensure that such ailments no longer go unnoticed.

Visiting Professor Valerie Edward-Jones apprised the audience of several studies that have shown many are heavily colonised with a poly-microbial population, known as a biofilm. By reducing this and adding an application of an antimicrobial dressing, she confirmed that improved healing rates had been observed.

A lecture delivered by an expert in medical textiles from the University's School of Art, Design and Architecture, Professor Parikshit Goswami, covered the value of interdisciplinary applied research and the developments in creating materials to reduce healthcare-associated infection.

International Exploration of Managing Wounds

The day's additional talks included information on the safeguarding of patients with chronic wounds and understanding how virtual and augmented reality can develop skills for leg ulcer management.

Event organiser Karen Ousey, who is Professor of Skin Integrity and heads the University's Institute of Skin Integrity and Infection Prevention (ISIaIP), said how well the conference had gone and that she was excited by the possibilities of global collaboration with Canada's researchers and the future opportunities that will arise from their visit.

"Feedback received after the conference had been excellent," said Professor Ousey. "The attendees really appreciated the multi-disciplinary aspect of the conference and the overall consensus of the talks were that they were engaging and informative."

Explore further: First competency framework launched for field of tissue viability

Related Stories

First competency framework launched for field of tissue viability

December 3, 2015
Tissue viability is an important, multi-faceted branch of healthcare that includes the treatment of wounds and ulcers. Now, a University of Huddersfield expert has played a key role in drawing up a new framework designed ...

New skin-graft system a better fix for chronic wounds

February 2, 2017
According to the National Institutes of Health, more than six million cases of chronic wounds cost $20 billion each year in the United States. Diabetic ulcers, pressure sores, surgical site wounds and traumatic injuries to ...

Unexpected helpers in wound healing

January 24, 2018
Nerve cells in the skin help wounds to heal. When an injury occurs, cells known as glial cells change into repair cells and disseminate into the wound, where they help the skin to regenerate, researchers from the University ...

New study finds chronic wound patients who never receive opioids heal faster

November 21, 2016
Patients with chronic wounds who never receive opioids heal faster than those who do receive the drugs, according to a new study by George Washington University (GW) researcher Victoria Shanmugam, M.D.

When it's more than just a flesh wound

March 27, 2014
If you have a sore that hasn't improved in a month then chances are you are not receiving the specialised care you need.

Researchers find factor that delays wound healing

October 17, 2017
New research carried out at The University of Manchester has identified a bacterium—normally present on the skin that causes poor wound healing in certain conditions.

Recommended for you

Race plays role in regaining weight after gastric bypass surgery

November 15, 2018
African Americans and Hispanic Americans who have undergone Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB) are at greater risk to regain weight as compared to Caucasians. To date, no study has addressed the effect of race on weight regain ...

Surgery, not antibiotics, should remain first-line treatment for appendicitis: study

November 14, 2018
Treating appendicitis with antibiotics as an alternative to surgical removal of the inflamed organ was found to be more costly in the long term and result in higher rates of hospital readmissions, according to a study by ...

Study finds that in treating obesity, one size does not fit all

November 13, 2018
Analyzing data from more than 2,400 obese patients who underwent bariatric weight-loss surgery, researchers identified at least four different patient subgroups that diverge significantly in eating behaviors and rate of diabetes, ...

Surgery patients use only 1/4 of prescribed opioids, and prescription size matters

November 7, 2018
Many surgeons write prescriptions for opioid pain medications four times larger than what their patients will actually use after common operations, a new study shows.

Minimally invasive surgery associated with worse survival for women with cervical cancer compared to open hysterectomy

October 31, 2018
When comparing standard-of-care surgical options for women with early-stage cervical cancer, two studies led by researchers at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center discovered that minimally invasive radical hysterectomy ...

Aspirin alone a good clot buster after knee surgery

October 22, 2018
When it comes to preventing blood clots after a knee replacement, good old aspirin may be just as effective as newer, more expensive drugs.


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.