Section I. REVIEW
Infections are prone to develop in wounds of violence. Therefore, the prevention
and control of infection is one of the chief problems in emergency medical treatment
and care of wounded patients. The development of infection, particularly in large
wounds, increases the period of morbidity since infection produces further destruction of
tissue and suppresses the healing process. Infection also has a marked effect on the
final result of the injury and the mortality. Tissues destroyed by infection are usually
replaced by scar tissue, which may have a harmful effect on function as well as
Some of the terms related to infection are defined below:
a. Antibiotic. An antibiotic is a substance produced by microorganisms, which
kills bacteria and other microorganisms. It is used in treating infectious diseases.
b. Antiseptic. An antiseptic is an agent that may kill pathogens, but more often
retards their growth.
c. Aseptic. Aseptic is a state of being sterile (free from septic material).
d. Contaminated. Contaminated means compromised by the presence of
bacteria or harboring pathogenic agents.
e. Infection. An infection is produced by an invasion of disease-producing
pathogens which multiple in the body.
f. Malaise. Malaise means body discomfort.
g. Morbidity. Morbidity refers to the condition of being diseased or to the ratio
of sick to well persons. This is not to be confused with mortality, which is the death rate.
h. Pathogen. A pathogen is a disease-producing organism.
i. Phagocyte. A phagocyte is a form of leukocyte (white blood cell) that ingests
microorganisms or other cells.