Collagen dressings can help boost the production of human collagen at the wound site.

Collagen dressings may be new to some patients, but they have shown excellent results in helping to heal partial thickness wounds, necrotic wounds, skin grafts and second-degree burns, among others. While collagen dressings don’t work for all wound types, there are some basic details that can help you decide whether the wound care option is appropriate for you or your patient.

What are they?

Collagen dressings are dressings that are derived from animal sources, such as bovine (cattle), equine (horse) or porcine (pig) sources. The collagen helps to promote the growth of new collagen at the wound site, prompting an often speedier recovery period. Collagen dressings can also help with fibroblast production, and according to Medscape, some dressings may also help maintain the appropriate temperature of the wound site’s microenvironment.

Most collagen dressings also include antimicrobial agents to limit the spread of any potential infections.

While collagen dressings come in a variety of pore sizes, they will often require a secondary dressing to keep in place. Collagen dressings can come as gels, powders, pastes and even as freeze-dried sheets that can be placed on the wounds.

Depending on the type of wound they are being used on, collagen dressings should be changed about every seven days to remain effective.

Where they won’t work

As with other dressings, collagen dressings are not a fix-all. Some of the wound types that collagen dressings may not prove effective for include third-degree burns and wounds that are covered in dry eschar.

Additionally, collagen dressings may not work for some individuals. If you have a sensitivity to products that contain:

bovine
porcine
avian

You may have issues with collagen dressings. If you have sensitivities to only one type of animal product, you may be able to use particular collagen dressings.

Advanced Tissue is the nation’s leader in delivering specialized wound care supplies to patients, delivering to both homes and long-term care facilities.