Understanding the role of nutrition and wound healing

Nutr Clin Pract. 2010 Feb;25(1):61-8. doi: 10.1177/0884533609358997.


Optimal wound healing requires adequate nutrition. Nutrition deficiencies impede the normal processes that allow progression through stages of wound healing. Malnutrition has also been related to decreased wound tensile strength and increased infection rates. Malnourished patients can develop pressure ulcers, infections, and delayed wound healing that result in chronic nonhealing wounds. Chronic wounds are a significant cause of morbidity and mortality for many patients and therefore constitute a serious clinical concern. Because most patients with chronic skin ulcers suffer micronutrient status alterations and malnutrition to some degree, current nutrition therapies are aimed at correcting nutrition deficiencies responsible for delayed wound healing. This review provides current information on nutrition management for simple acute wounds and complex nonhealing wounds and offers some insights into innovative future treatments.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Chronic Disease
  • Humans
  • Malnutrition / complications*
  • Micronutrients / therapeutic use
  • Nutritional Requirements
  • Nutritional Status
  • Pressure Ulcer / etiology
  • Pressure Ulcer / prevention & control
  • Skin Diseases, Bacterial / etiology
  • Skin Diseases, Bacterial / prevention & control*
  • Skin Ulcer / etiology
  • Skin Ulcer / prevention & control*
  • Wound Healing / physiology*
  • Wounds and Injuries / complications
  • Wounds and Injuries / diet therapy*


  • Micronutrients