Chronic wounds are a silent epidemic in Australia

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Chronic wounds are a silent epidemic in Australia

They are a significantly under-recognised public health issue, and impose substantial costs to the health care system and patients.(4)


The COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact in the way in which chronic wounds are being managed and the effect this is having on patients not being able to visit their healthcare professionals has led to delayed wound healing.

Most patients with chronic wounds have multiple comorbidities, such as diabetes, hypertension, and chronic kidney disease, and are at risk for impaired wound healing and wound complications.  These same risk factors place many patients with chronic wounds in a high-risk category for developing severe consequences if they become ill with COVID-19.

Delayed wound healing is one of the key challenges faced by all hospital and community nurses, with the presence of biofilm acknowledged as a leading cause of delayed wound healing.

Global Situation

Globally, there is a perfect storm brewing in wound care: an ageing population; an increase in age – and lifestyle-associated conditions such as vascular disease, diabetes (which is pandemic) and obesity; economic strains in healthcare systems worldwide; overuse of antibiotics alongside increasing antibiotic resistance; and the ongoing severe impact of wounds on quality of life.  Despite all the new products and best practices, the burden of wounds is not getting smaller.  There is no magic recipe that rapidly improves non-healing wounds with consistent, reproducible results in all settings.  It may be time to rethink what constitutes best practice, particularly in wounds that are colonised by biofilm or infected.1

In Australia

Managing chronic wounds is very challenging for all wound care specialists. There is potential for improved patient outcomes, such as effective treatment and prevention of wound complications. This can help minimise treatment costs, which currently costs the healthcare system $3 billion per annum in Australia. 4

Our Solution: Prontosan®

Knowing what options exist to address biofilm in acute and chronic wounds is not always simple and clinicians play a key role in recognising and preventing chronic wounds. 

Since the launch of Prontosan® Wound Irrigation Solution,  Prontosan® Wound Gel and Prontosan® Wound Gel X, reports have been reaching us of promising treatment successes. Due to its special Betaine formulation in particular, Prontosan® facilitates more efficient removal of coatings and biofilm from wounds, which considerably reduces both duration of therapy and cost implications for healthcare services.5

The products have become available throughout the world and for over 10 years have been available to tens of thousands Australians suffering from chronic wounds.

Numerous studies proved a superior efficacy over use of saline and water. See more details of our case studies  here.



1. Murphy C, Atkin L, Swanson T, Tachi M, Tan YK, Vega de Ceniga M, Weir D, Wolcott R. International consensus document. Defying hard-to-heal wounds with an early antibiofilm intervention strategy: wound hygiene. J Wound Care 2020; 29(Suppl 3b):S1–28.

2. Attinger, Christopher and Randy Wolcott. “Clinically Addressing Biofilm in Chronic Wounds.” Advances in Wound Care 1.3 (2012): 127-132. 

3. C Dowsett: Adopting the two-week challenge in practice: making the case for silver dressing, Wounds UK, Vol.10, N°2, 2014.

4. Dr Rosana Pacella, Issue Paper: “Chronic Wounds in Australia, July (2017), Australian Centre for Health Services Innovation (AusHSI), Institute of Health  and Biomedical Innovation, School of Public Health and Social Work, Queensland University of Technology.

5. Andriessen AE, Eberlein T. Assessment of a wound cleansing solution in the treatment of problem wounds. Wounds. 2008 Jun;20(6):171-5.