Infrared thermography is a useful technique for the investigation of disorders which affect skin blood flow. The damage to skin blood vessels caused by thermal injury is a major determinant of the capacity of the wound to heal. Thermographic assessment of this damage has been found to correlate with the healing time of burn wounds. However, the application of thermography to the assessement of burns for early surgery has been limited because of the difficulties involved in correcting for cooling artefacts resulting from the effect of evaporative water loss (EWL) at the wound surface. A water impermeable polyvinylchloride film (sold in the USA as Saran Wrap, in Australia as Glad Wrap and in the UK as Clingfilm (CF)) was investigated as a wound covering to avoid this cooling effect. It was found that the CF abolished the cooling effect of EWL and did not significantly interfere with the measurement of surface temperature. This material provides a solution to the problems of thermographic examination of wounds such as burns where damage to the skin surface allows exudation or EWL to occur. © 1991.
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