Numerous underlying diseases can lead to the occurrence of a wound and/or affect healing. Optimising the medical management of the following comorbidities may prevent a wound from occurring and/or permit normal wound healing.

Autoimmune disorders

  • Decreases resistance to infection

Cardiovascular disorders

  • Hypoxia reduces oxygen and nutrients supply to tissues

Diabetes mellitus

  • Impairs granulation, collagen formation and delays wound maturation
  • Impairs renal, ocular and vascular function
  • Impairs inflammatory response and increases risk of infection
  • May impair blood flow
  • May cause peripheral and autonomic neuropathy
  • Increases peri-capillary albumin deposits that reduce oxygen and nutrient diffusion to tissues

Hepatic failure

  • Reduces haemoglobin concentration
  • Impairs drug metabolism
  • Decreases clotting factors
  • Reduces plasma protein
  • Decreases bactericidal activity
  • Impaires glucose regulation


  • Impaired neutrophil activity
  • Promotes endothelial cell apoptosis


  • Increases risk of infection
  • Reduces blood flow of oxygen and nutrients to skin

Renal disease

  • Increases risk of infection from impaired immune system and inflammatory response
  • Increases oedema that impairs blood flow and contributes to tissue hypoxia

Respiratory disorders

  • Decreases oxygen to red blood cells and tissue

Rheumatoid disease

  • Increases inflammatory response
  • Prescribed anti-inflammatory and steroid medications impair healing
  • Reduces joint flexibility and movement