Skin Cells “Walk” to Repair Wounds – WSU Researchers Report

Wound HealingWound repair is a complex process, as it occurs in several overlapping phases such as hemostasis, inflammation, proliferation, and maturation. Wound healing is the process in which the skin repairs itself after injury. The skin’s ability to heal even after considerable damage has occurred is due to the presence of stem cells in the dermis and cells in the stratum basale of the epidermis, all of which can generate new tissue. In their recently published research, Washington State University (WSU) researchers have described how the cells will alter the proteins holding them in place and “walk” to repair a wound.

Better Understanding Can Improve the Healing Process

Published in the FASEB journal, the study found how epidermis cells dissolve the glue that binds them and reuse some of the proteins to move to seal a wound site. This allows the cells to shift from side to side to use their outer edges as “feet”, and also grow more cells to form new, healed skin. To have the most detailed look at the process, Washington State University scientists recorded the process through a high-resolution confocal microscope.

Factors that often contribute to non-healing chronic wounds are diabetes, venous or arterial disease, infection, and metabolic deficiencies of old age. According to the researchers, by enhancing the motility of these skin cells, we could promote healing in patients that have problems with wound closure and ulceration of the skin.

Clear Documentation with EMR

In wound care, it is also crucial to document any conditions which could affect healing such as positioning limitations, nutritional status, continence, abnormal labs, infections, deterioration of medical condition, and non-compliance. For error-free wound documentation, and to make key treatment decisions based on it, EMR is ideal for long term care facilities, hospitals, wound care centers and healthcare facilities. A wound-specific EMR such as WoundWizard is a great option that comes with great documentation outcome reporting and an easy to use interface. The 3D wound models in the software make it easy to create and view wound sites.