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September 1967

Effects of Various Dressings on Skin and Subcutaneous Temperatures: A Comparison

Author Affiliations

From the Price Institute of Surgical Research and the Department of Surgery, University of Louisville School of Medicine, and the Louisville General Hospital.

Arch Surg. 1967;95(3):464-471. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1967.01330150140018

HEAT has been used in the treatment of a large variety of diseases for many centuries. In the field of surgery, the application of heat has been employed in great part in the treatment of superficial soft tissue infections by a variety of techniques, most often the traditional "hot wet dressing." Yet, a review of the literature revealed little specific information pertaining to the effect of different types of dressings on the temperatures of the skin and subcutaneous tissues. A survey of the dressings used at the Louisville General Hospital, University of Louisville, revealed that the types in common use were as follows: (1) preheated wet dressings applied at designated intervals, (2) ordinary dry gauze dressings, and (3) large bulky dressings. In this hospital, the use of hot water containers, electric heating pads, and apparatuses producing radiant energy has been discouraged in recent years because of the danger that these

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