A healing wound represents a complex series of interactions between cells, soluble mediators, and extracellular matrix. Within this multifaceted environment, there are multiple regulatory points which control the ordered series of events that lead to normal tissue repair. An alteration in this physiologic network can lead to the development of a chronic wound. This article presents an update on the numerous mediators that exist within the wound environment in both acute normal healing and chronic nonhealing wounds. We also present a hypothesis which may provide a conceptual pathophysiologic mechanism with which to understand all chronic wounds.