A necrotic wound is a wound that contains dead tissue. Wounds of this sort will often be discolored and soft with a very foul odor. Necrosis in a wound can have a number of causes, including insect or animal venom. Treating a wound of this kind is extremely important, since necrosis can result in a fatal infection. Medical maggots or surgery may be required to remove any dead tissue in a wound.
Healthy tissue that has died is often referred to as necrotic tissue. When some of the tissue in a wound dies, this is referred to as a necrotic wound. These types of wounds require immediate medical attention, since they are often very serious.
A necrotic wound will usually be very discolored. Often, it will be black, but it may also be yellow, green, or white. It is also usually very soft and mushy, and it will sometimes be covered with a scab or patches of scabs. One of the most unpleasant characteristics of necrotic tissue, however, is its smell. This smell occurs when the dead tissue begins to decay, or rot.
There may be several causes of wound necrosis. Severe frostbite is one of the more common causes of necrotic tissue. When soft tissue freezes, the cells expand and often burst, causing the tissue to die. Necrosis can also occur when the blood and oxygen supply is cut off from a certain part of the body. This can occur when a string is wrapped tightly around a finger, for example.
Certain types of venom can also cause necrosis. The venom from some pit vipers can result in a necrotic wound, for instance. Brown recluse spider bites are also known to cause necrosis in victims.
Promptly treating a necrotic wound is very important, since these wounds can be fatal if they are not treated. Bacteria will typically begin to grow in the dead tissue. This bacteria will then usually spread to other parts of the body, such as the heart or lungs.
Treatment for a necrotic wound typically involves removal of the dead tissue, which is sometimes referred to as debridement. In some cases, several maggots may be placed on the wound. While this practice may seem rather unsanitary to many people, doctors have been doing it for quite some time. The maggots remove the dead tissue by eating it. Dead tissue can also be surgically removed, but this is generally more common when a necrotic wound is located on a digit or limb.