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Ostomy Wound Manage. 2005 Jan;51(1):28-34.

Criteria for identifying wound infection--revisited.

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  • 1Tissue Viability, Buckinghamshire Chilterns University College, Chalfont St. Giles, UK.


The accurate identification of wound infection provides a clinical challenge to those involved in patient care and would appear to have not kept pace with other developments in the field of wound care. Attempts have been made to improve on the situation but diverse opinions together with lack of consensus prevail. The literature on infection criteria was reviewed and a set of criteria were collated; a number of criteria at the time were described as subtle in nature and have undergone validation studies. This article suggests a new perspective on the clinical identification of wound infection--ie, the signs of infection are closely associated with the wound type. Infection criteria for six wound types are explored and presented. This approach is intended for consideration together with the results of an impending Delphi study that will raise awareness of this issue, promote discussion, and lead to validation of an accurate set of clinical criteria.

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