Digital tools for the monitoring and management of wounds

Health Technology Wales
Record ID 32018005538
Authors' objectives: HTW assessed the clinical and cost effectiveness of integrated digital wound care management systems compared with standard care for wound assessment and management. Digital wound management systems comprise of a digital device, typically an app on a tablet or smartphone, which can image the wound in three dimensions and document wound assessments. The device automatically measures wound surface area and depth using software or artificial intelligence algorithms. Assessment is uploaded to a centralised, secure, digital dashboard or portal where the patient’s wound care can be managed remotely and reviewed by specialists in wound care. The dashboard allows the entire wound caseload to be reviewed, and patients prioritised depending on clinical need. The system integrates with patient electronic records.
Authors' results and conclusions: HTW found evidence that the three-dimensional (3D) automatic wound assessment conducted by the systems was reproducible and accurate for wound surface area for wounds between 3cm² to 10cm². However, there was evidence that small wounds, very large wounds, wounds in contouring areas of the body and wounds on darker skin tones were more challenging to measure. The systems were poor at measuring depth. The studies that considered clinical use of the systems were pilot or feasibility studies. Implementation of digital wound management systems is feasible in a wide range of settings, particularly in community health care or nursing homes. There is evidence that patient satisfaction with using digital wound management systems is good, but studies where patients uploaded their own images had high levels of exclusion due to inability to use or access the relevant app. There is some evidence that wound documentation improves, and evidence that assessment time is faster when health care professionals measure wounds using digital wound management systems. There were no comparisons with standard care made that allowed us to determine whether wound healing outcomes improved after system introduction.
Authors' methods: The Evidence Appraisal Report is based on a literature search (strategy available on request) for published clinical and economic evidence on the health technology of interest. It is not a full systematic review but aims to identify the best available evidence on the health technology of interest. Researchers critically evaluate and synthesise this evidence. We include the following clinical evidence in order of priority: systematic reviews; randomised trials; non-randomised trials. We only include evidence for “lower priority” evidence where outcomes are not reported by a “higher priority” source. We also search for economic evaluations or original research that can form the basis of an assessment of costs/cost comparison. We carry out various levels of economic evaluation, according to the evidence that is available to inform this.
Project Status: Completed
Year Published: 2024
English language abstract: An English language summary is available
Publication Type: Rapid Review
Country: Wales, United Kingdom
MeSH Terms
  • Wounds and Injuries
  • Wound Healing
  • Surgical Wound Infection
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Telemedicine
  • Mobile Applications
  • Imaging, Three-Dimensional
  • Electronic Health Records
  • Digital Technology
  • Artificial intelligence
  • Wound measurement
  • Wound management
  • Wound systems
Organisation Name: Health Technology Wales
Contact Address: Life Sciences Hub Wales 3 Assembly Square Cardiff CF10 4PL
Contact Name: Susan Myles, PhD
Contact Email:
This is a bibliographic record of a published health technology assessment from a member of INAHTA or other HTA producer. No evaluation of the quality of this assessment has been made for the HTA database.