Discharge

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Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. [1] ; Associate Editor(s)-in-Chief: Aditya Govindavarjhulla, M.B.B.S. [2]

Overview

Discharge is an exudate draining from the wounds. It can be internal or external. It is formed from the serum.

Classification

Serous

(resembling serum)

Sanguinous

(contains blood cells)

  • Red drainage from trauma to a blood vessel.
  • This may occur with the cleaning of a wound or disturbance to a wound.
  • The consistency appears thin and watery with sanguinous fluid.
  • Discharge fluid contains red blood cells, which give it its red appearance.

Serosanguinous

(consisting of serum and blood)

  • Serosanguinous fluid appears pink due to a small number of blood cells mixing with serous drainage.
  • Thin and water-like consistency.
  • Serosanguinous fluid is a normal occurrence in the healing of wounds.

Purulent

(containing pus)

  • Purulent discharge is yellow, gray or green in color.
  • It results when infection occurs.
  • The discharge fluid has infectious microbes, white cells and other inflammatory cells.
  • The volume of the exudate increases with prolonged infection.

Mucopurulent

(containing mucus and pus)

Hemorrhagic

(characterized by hemorrhage)

  • Hemorrhagic discharge indicates a leaking blood vessel leaking blood.
  • The consistency is thicker than sanguinous fluid.
  • It may require surgical methods to control bleeding.

References


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