Journal of Mathematical Biology

, Volume 65, Issue 5, pp 967–996 | Cite as

A finite-element model for healing of cutaneous wounds combining contraction, angiogenesis and closure

  • F. J. VermolenEmail author
  • E. Javierre
Open Access


A simplified finite-element model for wound healing is proposed. The model takes into account the sequential steps of dermal regeneration, wound contraction, angiogenesis and wound closure. An innovation in the present study is the combination of the aforementioned partially overlapping processes, which can be used to deliver novel insights into the process of wound healing, such as geometry related influences, as well as the influence of coupling between the various existing subprocesses on the actual healing behavior. The model confirms the clinical observation that epidermal closure proceeds by a crawling and climbing mechanism at the early stages, and by a stratification process in layers parallel to the skin surface at the later stages. The local epidermal oxygen content may play an important role here. The model can also be used to investigate the influence of local injection of hormones that stimulate partial processes occurring during wound healing. These insights can be used to improve wound healing treatments.


Wound healing Finite-element method Wound closure Wound contraction Angiogenesis 

Mathematics Subject Classification (2000)

35L65 92C99 



The financial support by Agentschap, an agency within the Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs, in the framework of the IOP self-healing materials is gratefully acknowledged. This support enables the fruitful collaboration between the researchers from the Netherlands and Spain. E. Javierre gratefully acknowledges the Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation through the project DP12009- 07514.

Open Access

This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial License which permits any noncommercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author(s) and source are credited.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Delft Institute of Applied MathematicsDelft University of TechnologyDelftThe Netherlands
  2. 2.Centro Universitario de la Defensa-AGMZaragozaSpain
  3. 3.Aragón Institute of Engineering Research (I3A)Universidad de ZaragozaZaragozaSpain

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