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Wound Care

Treatment for Acute & Non-Healing Wounds

If your child has large, deep, or complex wounds that are not healing as they should, our pediatric wound care specialists at Children’s Hospital New Orleans are here to help with compassionate treatment. Our clinic is staffed by a multidisciplinary team that includes various pediatric specialists, including plastic surgeons, who work alongside highly qualified registered nurses and other healthcare professionals. Our team’s goal is to resolve wounds and prevent prolonged admissions to the hospital while educating both parents and patients on the wound healing process.

Types of wounds we treat

We offer individualized care for children with wounds like:

  • Abscesses (red, swollen, infected bumps filled with pus)
  • Burns (first- and second-degree burn wounds resulting from heat, chemical, or electrical causes)
  • Gastrostomy tube site problems (feeding tubes for children who cannot get adequate nutrition through oral means)
  • Pilonidal cysts (abnormal sacs near the tailbone that include embedded hair and skin debris)
  • Pressure sores (also called bedsores, these are open skin wounds that result from prolonged periods of inactivity)
  • Surgical wounds (from incisions and cuts made during surgical procedures)
  • Trauma wounds (caused by accidents, bites, stings, etc.)

Wound care services we offer

Whether our team sees your child as an inpatient in the hospital or for outpatient appointments, our goal is to prevent infections, promote healing, and to reduce any associated pain while working to diminish any resulting scars. Depending on the wound type, children may require antibiotic medication to treat or prevent infections and pain medication if their wound is causing discomfort.

Wound care is individualized for each patient we treat, but wounds typically heal in a predictable way and treatment typically involves the following steps:

  • Irrigation: Wounds need moisture for better healing, and irrigation involves the steady flow of a saline solution to hydrate it and remove any lingering debris.
  • Cleaning: Debris, dried blood, and dead skin is carefully and gently removed using moistened gauze pads.
  • Dressing: Our team works hard to choose the gentlest and most effective dressing to keep the wound protected and keep germs out. Dressing also help absorb fluid draining from the wound that could damage the skin around it. Dressings may mean stitching a wound closed and regularly applying fresh bandages, or leaving a deeper wound unstitched and packing it with gauze to help it heal from the inside out.

Changing dressings at home

Keeping your child’s wound clean will help it heal, and your child’s doctor or nurse will show you how to change the wound dressing if they are an outpatient. They will let you know how long the dressing should be left on and which wound care products to use. You might need to purchase new supplies to dress wounds, such as non-sterile gloves, adhesive remover, gauze pads, saline solution, scissors, tape, and so on. It’s important to keep your hands clean and put on gloves if recommended when changing old dressings.

To reduce the appearance of scars, keep the wound out of the sun, which may take 3 months to a year for proper healing. Once the wound has healed, use high-SPF sunscreen on the wound. Keep the wound at a stable temperature and try to prevent it from getting too hot or cold.

Factors that can delay wound healing

Sometimes bacteria (germs) cause contamination that make wounds slower to heal, especially in the case of open wounds. A contaminated wound in which bacteria spreads is called an infection, which can invade the soft tissues and prevent healing. Wound healing may be further delayed by poor nutrition, specific diseases (like diabetes or kidney disease), certain treatments (such as chemotherapy or radiation), or obesity.

Refer a Patient

Please fax the following information to 504.894.5563:

  • Signed and dated order for “Wound Care Evaluation and Treatment,” including an ICD-10 code
  • Pertinent clinical information about the wound, a history and physical and any related testing
  • Demographic information
  • Insurance information


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