20 February 2018

New surgical wound dehiscence consensus document aims to improve outcomes for clinicians and their patients

Smith & Nephew (LSE:SN, NYSE:SNN), the global medical technology business, welcomes the publication of a new global consensus document by Wounds International “Surgical wound dehiscence: improving prevention and outcomes”.1

The consensus document, endorsed by the World Union of Wound Healing Societies (WUWHS), targets clinicians in all care settings to help raise awareness and understanding of surgical wound dehiscence (SWD), a complication in which a wound ruptures along a surgical incision.

Professor Karen Ousey, Chair of the Core Expert Working Group who led the discussions and debate leading to this Consensus, commented:

“By building a global consensus, as well as providing practical guidance, we hope to inspire clinicians to improve outcomes for patients in this area. SWD is almost certainly under-reported, not least because of variation in the interpretation and definition.” Professor Ousey continued “As a result, patients with SWD may not receive optimal treatment and may experience additional surgical site complications and even increased mortality.”

The consensus recommends the use of negative pressure wound therapy if a patient has high exudate levels or is at risk of delayed healing, often factors associated with SWD. Topical antimicrobials at certain grades of SWD may also be used, where clinical signs or symptoms of infection are present.1

Paolo Di Vincenzo, Smith & Nephew’s SVP of Advanced Wound Management, said: “Smith & Nephew continues to be dedicated to practice development and consistency through our support of important initiatives like this, as well as a continued commitment to innovation and clinical evidence generation to help improve patient outcomes.”

The WUWHS consensus document was published by Wounds International in February 2018, supported by an educational grant from Smith & Nephew. These guidelines may be downloaded for free at: http://www.woundsinternational.com/consensus-documents/view/surgical-wound-dehiscence-improving-prevention-and-outcomes.



Dave Snyder
+1 (978) 749-1440
Smith & Nephew plc

About Smith & Nephew

Smith & Nephew is a global medical technology business dedicated to supporting healthcare professionals in their daily efforts to improve the lives of their patients. With leadership positions in Orthopaedic Reconstruction, Advanced Wound Management, Sports Medicine and Trauma & Extremities, Smith & Nephew has more than 15,000 employees and a presence in more than 100 countries. Annual sales in 2017 were almost $4.8 billion. Smith & Nephew is a member of the FTSE100 (LSE: SN, NYSE: SNN).

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1. World Union of Wound Healing Societies (WUWHS) Consensus Document. Surgical wound dehiscence: improving prevention and outcomes. Wounds International, 2018.