In the UK, chronic wounds represent a significant burden to patients and the NHS. Some 200,000 patients in the UK have a chronic wound. The impact on their quality of life is well documented (Franks and Morgan, 2003).
Common symptoms of ulceration include pain, exudate and odour, and these symptoms are frequently associated with poor sleep, loss of mobility and social isolation. The cost to the NHS of caring for patients with a chronic wound is conservatively estimated at 2.3bn–3.1bn per year (at 2005–2006 costs), around 3% of the total estimated out-turn expenditure on health (89.4bn) for the same period (Posnett and Franks, 2007). With proper diagnosis and treatment, much of this burden should be avoidable.
Posnett and Franks 2008