Surgical Debridement

  • Joshua A. David
  • Ernest S. ChiuEmail author


Surgical debridement is defined as the removal of nonviable tissue, foreign material, and bacteria from a wound using sharp surgical instruments. This fast and specific debridement method is an essential component of preparing the wound bed, preventing infection, and promoting physiological healing. This technique also offers adjunctive benefits, such as the opportunity to thoroughly assess the wound and implement surgical planning. Surgical debridement has become an integral aspect of management in virtually all wound types, including acute traumatic injuries, burns, cutaneous infections, and chronic wounds, such as diabetic and pressure ulcers. Multiple classification schemes have been developed in order to guide wound debridement. Fluency in surgical debridement as it relates to wound physiology, infection, and operative technique is a fundamental skill for all practitioners of wound management.


Surgical debridement Debridement Wound stages Wound healing Wound infection Wound bed preparation Chronic wound Biofilm Burn Acute wound 

Supplementary material

Video 1.1

Surgical debridement. Preoperative planning: flap markings; Doppler sonography for assessment of vessel patency; local anesthesia; surgical site preparation with povidone-iodine; sterile field; staining with methylene blue for guided debridement). Surgical debridement: wound edge incision; removal of stained tissue using electrocautery; removal of residual stained tissues using curette; rongeur-assisted bone biopsy; fluid irrigation via pulsatile jet device. Postoperative: debrided wound (MP4 167740 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Hansjörg Wyss Department of Plastic SurgeryNew York Langone Medical CenterNew YorkUSA

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