Necrotic Tissue

What is Necrotic Tissue?

Necrotic tissue is a medical condition in which there are dead cells in your body organ. The death of the cells happens due to lack of oxygen and interrupted blood supply. It causes the cells to be acidic, releasing enzymes that break the cells. The malfunctioning of cells can make other body parts inactive. It can later result in puncture of the cell membrane. Ultimately, the cell walls will explode due to the collection of extra fluid. Necrotic tissue is the result of skin necrosis. Necrosis is a premature death of cells which occurs due to autolysis (self-digestion of cells after release of enzymes). These cells are a part of the living tissue inside the skin. Necrosis occurs due to external injury or trauma in a particular organ. Necrotic tissue is skin necrosis, in which many cells die in the same organ. It is considered to be a damaging health condition, as it can result in serious diseases like skin cancer. Each year there are more new cases of skin cancer than the combined incidence of cancers of the breast, prostate, lung, and colon. Over the past three decades, more people have had skin cancer than all other cancers.


Advanced age, other health conditions, and waiting until the infection has reached a detrimental stage, are factors that put patients at a greater risk of death.
Common symptoms of the disease include:

  • Pain.
  • Redness of the skin.
  • Swelling.
  • Blisters.
  • Fluid collection.
  • Skin discolouration.
  • Sensation.
  • Numbness.


Necrotic wounds will lead to discolouration of your skin. It usually gives a dark brown or black appearance to your skin area (where the dead cells are accumulated). Necrotic tissue color will ultimately become black, and leathery. Some of the most probable causes include:

  • Severe skin injuries or chronic wounds.
  • Passive smoking.
  • Inflammation.
  • Excess consumption of alcohol.
  • Use of steroids.
  • Bacterial or fungal attack.


The main risk factors include:

  • The the spreading of infection.
  • Risk of limbs being amputated.


There is no certain way to prevent necrotic tissue. But, one can still adopt a few measures, which are:

  • Nursing any wound carefully.
  • Keeping it clean.
  • Washing hands frequently.
  • Changing bandages regularly.

How is it diagnosed?

At Medanta, the ways to diagnose the disease are:


How is it treated?

There are usually two types of skin necrosis. In one type, muscles and connective tissue get affected. At Medanta, in such cases, the following methods are adopted for the treatment:  


  • Antibiotics or surgery

    The treatment will involve a strong dose of intravenous antibiotics. At the next stage, the doctor will remove the dead tissues. If the other type or condition is gangrene, which is severe, the affected part will need to be amputated.

When do I contact the doctor?

If you face symptoms such as numbness, redness of skin, blisters or pain, you should consult a doctor immediately. 

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