Journal Articles

Carl von Reyher and the origins of debridement

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Carl von Reyher and the origins of debridement

Edward White
2 July 2019

In this issue, we explore the nebulous boundary between wound care and surgery, through exploration of the origins of debridement. In the process, we will learn that the term itself was coined by an unlikely and largely unrecognised source. Debridement, the practice of removing devitalized tissue and foreign matter from wounds, derives from the French term for ‘unbridling’. What is understood to be debridement in present day wound care has not always been thus, with the modern notions of debridement differing markedly from the early incarnation.

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