Tunneled & Tracking Wounds

Tunneling or tracking wounds may not heal with standard treatment

A tunneling wound or tracking wound is a narrow opening or passageway extending from a wound underneath the skin in any direction through soft tissue, resulting in dead space with potential for abscess formation. These wounds can also be called sinus tracts. Tunneling can occur in any wound, but it occurs most commonly in surgical wounds and patients with neuropathy. Usually caused by infection of the underlying tissue, this type of wound can be also caused by improper packing of a wound, or the presence of a foreign body in a wound.

Treatment for tunneled wounds

Treatment of tunneling and undermined wounds is typically focused on treating the cause. The goal of treatment is to stimulate the growth of granulation tissue (new connective tissue and microscopic blood vessels that form on the surfaces of a wound during the healing process) within the tract, and to make sure that the wound edges do not close prematurely. A tracking wound can take 6 weeks to 6 months to heal completely.

First the area will be thoroughly cleaned, and any dead tissue will be removed. Depending on the causes of the tunneling, your doctor may prescribe medications, drain the wound, and then pack and dress the wound. Surgery may remove cysts, damaged tissue or expose the tunnels.

Sometimes a tunneling or tracking wound fails to heal with standard treatment. 

Omeza® Collagen Matrix is indicated for the management of wounds including tunneled or undermined wounds.

Omeza® treatments address the key components required for effective wound care, including periwound care, inhibiting growth of biofilm and in-wound bioburden, inflammation and topical pain management.

Our FDA 510(K) clearance required safety data for Omeza® Collagen Matrix which reported no adverse events, safe with no potential for irritation and sensitization, and safe for use on damaged skin. 

“Upper lobe of right lung removed for treatment of squamous cell carcinoma; surgical incision initially closed with 2 stitches.  Site grew painful, hot, and began tunneling with opening expanding.  After 2+ weeks of increasing problems, Dr. Bell, with coordination of physician at Mayo Clinic, had patient apply Collagen Matrix to site.  Photos show healing over the course of first week using Collagen Matrix. Wounds completely closed at day 12 of treatment with collagen matrix.” – Supervised case study of tunneling wound closure.