Author(s): Bohling MW, Henderson RA, Swaim SF, Kincaid SA, Wright JC
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Abstract OBJECTIVE: To describe the macroscopic features of first and second intention cutaneous wound healing in the cat and compare with the dog. STUDY DESIGN: Experimental study. ANIMALS: Domestic shorthaired cats (6) and beagle dogs (6). METHODS: Square, open cutaneous wounds created on the dorsal aspect of the thorax were evaluated for 21 days for temporal and spatial development of granulation tissue, wound contraction, epithelialization, and total healing. To evaluate first intention healing, breaking strength of sutured linear cutaneous wounds was measured at 7 days post-wounding. Laser-Doppler perfusion imaging was used to measure cutaneous perfusion. RESULTS: First intention healing: sutured wounds in cats were only half as strong as those in dogs at day 7 (0.406 versus 0.818 kg breaking strength). Second intention healing: cats produced significantly less granulation tissue than dogs, with a peripheral, rather than central distribution. Wound epithelialization and total wound healing (total reduction in open wound area from contraction and epithelialization) were greater for dogs than for cats over 21 days. Wound contraction on day 7 was greater for dogs, but not on day 14 or 21. Cutaneous perfusion was initially greater for dogs than for cats, but no differences were detected after day 7. CONCLUSIONS: Significant, previously unreported differences in cutaneous wound healing exist between cats and dogs. In general, cutaneous wounds in cats are slower to heal. Cats and dogs also appear to use different mechanisms of second intention healing. In cats wounds close mainly by contraction of the wound edges, whereas in dogs wounds close more from central pull, and epithelialization. CLINICAL RELEVANCE: Surgeons should view the cat as a unique species, which presents its own special challenges in wound healing, and should take this into account when planning treatment of feline wounds, either by primary closure, or by second intention healing.
This article was published in Vet Surg
and referenced in Journal of Biotechnology & Biomaterials